18 enero 2006

The door in the floor

There was a little boy who didn't know if he wanted to be born. His mommy didn't know if she wanted him to be born, either. This is because they lived in a cabin in the woods, on an island, in a lake - and there was no one else around. And, in the cabin, there was a door in the floor.

The little boy was afraid of what was under the door in the floor, and the mommy was afraid, too. Once, long ago, other children had come to visit the cabin for Christmas, but the children had opened the door in the floor and they had disappeared down the hole, under the cabin, and all their presents had disappeared, too.

Once the mommy had tried to look for the children, but when she opened the door in the floor, she heard such an awful sound that her hair turned completely white, like the hair of a ghost. And she smelled such a terrible smell that her skin became as wrinkled as a raisin. It took a whole year for the mommy's skin to be smooth again, and for her hair not to be white. And when she'd opened the door in the floor, the mommy had also seen some horrible things that she never wanted to see again, like a snake that could make itself so small that it could sneak through the crack between the door and the floor - even when the door was closed - and then it could make itself so big again that it could carry the cabin on its back, as if the snake were a giant snail and the cabin were its shell.

The other things under the door in the floor are so horrible that you can only imagine them.

And so the mommy wondered if she wanted to have a little boy in a cabin in the woods, on an island, in a lake - and with no one else around - but especially because of everything that might be under the door in the floor. Then she thought: Why not? I'll just tell him not to open the door in the floor!

Well, that's easy for a mommy to say, but what about the little boy? He still didn't know if he wanted to be born into a world where there was a door in the floor, and no one else around. Yet there were also some beautiful things in the woods, and on the island, and in the lake.

Why not take a chance? the little boy thought. And so he was born, and he was very happy. His mommy was happy again, too, although she told the little boy at least once ever day, "Don't you ever, not ever - never, never, never - open the door in the floor!" But of course he was only a little boy. If you were that boy, wouldn't you want to open that door in the floor?

And that, is the end of the story.

(From A Widow for One Year, by John Irving)

Post-it: escribir a los editories de Tusquets y pedirles por favor por favor por favor que publiquen este cuento de John Irving. Al fin y al cabo, no van a publicar El ruido que hace alguien cuando no quiere hacer ruido sin publicar The door in the floor, no? Sería casi un delito...

1 comentario:

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