Parisianne Modert, here to lenda duende

Literati! Our most loyal Parisianne Modert enters the arena again. We never want this contest duende! But duende, it must, midnight July 15th. Parisianne offers this fireside legend.

Alejandro’s Duende Passing

by Parisianne Modert

“Duende is an obsessive spirit-transmigration, inheritance etched from the dying upon the living, one Andalusian tortured artist into the next as raging flash flood, floating moonlit ghost, goring bull horns, swishing cape and bull-spears piercing the flesh.

As a young man, I traveled southern España cradled by the Mediterranean at Málaga, kissed by the Atlantic’s Portugal, awed by Moorish Seville, mountainous Granada, Byzantine Córdoba and Arabian Alcazaba of Almería with yellow full moon over the Alhambra.

You see me as Alejandro, twisted as is a stripped, winded-tree, but I lived freely before my heart attack released my agonized obsession into my five year old grandson, Rodrigo, whom I had met only a moment before. My guitar, palos and duende became his as I ascended with my reaper.

Duende is light and dark, seductive magic raping any resistance. Passion blurs into the obsession of humming strings, lamenting voices, pounding heels in dance for blood must spurt in the bull ring to murder innocence.

I lost my elderly passion to this obsessive duende on a 2 am train eastward escaping from Seville, carrying its dreaming riders. Sleeplessly I wandered the swaying corridors reaching the club car, apparently silent and abandoned. I slid the windowed door open to flamenco guitar strings moaning as a gnostic ghost intentionally pulling me seductively towards it. There stood a phantomesque man, solemn as a nameless tombstone. The moonlight painted the rocking club car with brushed glimpses of him while swinging silver scythes at our faces, torsos and his guitar.

Our bodies flash flooded rushing energies becoming only my possession before his reaper claimed his hollowed-out soul. This sorrowful palos that you hear was never mine alone for I had to release it forward to my five year old grandson, Rodrigo on my own last silvery night. Rodrigo had to claim my heart’s mission, losing his own innocence so that this duende could live on in his string hum, lamenting voice, thunder of dancing heels, snorting of wild horses, a matador’s waving cape and charge of the ringed bull raging onward again and again.”

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12 comments

  1. Parisianne Modert says:

    I wish to thank Thorn, Morgan and the good people of A Word With You Press for publishing my story. I also wish to thank those of you who have read my first entry, this second entry or both as well as thanking all of you who have left notes. It is an honor to share myself in life, flash fiction and critique with you.

    I would highly recommend the viewing of Pablo Picasso’s 1933 painting of Bullfight: “Death of the Toreador” as to the life and death intensity that the Spanish word “duende” represents in the people past and present of the Andalusia.

    Muchísimas gracias

  2. Diane Cresswell says:

    I think I missed your first story – just going to have to back and see what I can find. This one – your way with words are always a deep pleasure for me to read. You take one into the realm of imagination where the words come alive with breath, color and emotion. Superb writing my dear – superb.

    • Parisianne Modert says:

      Thank you Kristy. Both of these entries were cut from and edited drastically downward in words to the bone from my first novel which remains dear to my heart, but would need months to edit before publishing. There is a saying that it takes one million words to become a writer and two million and a muse to become an artist. I found this adage of wisdom to be true and was fortunate that I found a muse to light my soul to courage and wild, inescapable madness of compulsions to create. My sin, dear Kristy, was falling in love with my muse for in that moment no mortal appears beautiful enough of spirit. Art is a lifting of the Twilight, a crossing over to the gods of Mt. Olympus, but there is no return from Zeus’s clouded pilars for fear of his lightning bolt revenges nor relief from his enchantingly empathic daughter. Life as a mortal is lost to me for I am an artist painting words among the gods who are both breathless beauty and savage cruelty. Art is seeing what mortals experience and writing about it anyway. I see you as an artist as well Kristy which allows me to be both joyous and devastated in empathy for your plight.

  3. Kenneth Weene

    Darkness with an Andalusian tempo. Are we not all the bull being tempted by the matador? Are we not all the matador shaving ever close to the horns.

    • Parisianne Modert says:

      Very nice thoughts Kenneth and thank you for understanding that the passing from passion to obsession is a crossing from light safety into dark daring and yet there is great beauty in embracing the waving cape within your hands. The matador encourages death’s charging hooves, the bull’s snort of determination to gore him/her. The bull is greater in strength as is death, but not as agile or play to the crowd of those who do not possess duende. Duende is the joyous, but arrogantly confident and must attitude of living with defiance choosing to dance with death knowing that death will eventually have its night sooner not later.

  4. Laura G says:

    It’s obvious to me that you would excel at poetry, since your stories are often color and tone poems… Give poetry a whirl?

    • Parisianne Modert says:

      I have about 60-70 poems written so far from which my favorites are considered by me to be my best writings. My prose are meant to have a variety of styles, themes, characters within alternative romance novels, but my poems tend to be very dark and very erotic. My prologue to “Smoke Veil Bridge” published in the last contest is probably the closest by poetry and prose have come to being a marriage.

      Thank you Laura.

      • Parisianne Modert says:

        I would like to recommend “Duende: A Journey Into the Heart of Flamenco” by Jason Webster for those of you wishing to learn more about this impossible to define word. It is a lyrically poetic autobiography of a drastic shift of life consciousness and culture. Thank you.

  5. Parisianne Modert says:

    It is an honor to have “Alejandro’s Duende Passing” as a finalist piece in “Again”. I hope each author and commentator will consider voting for this story and myself. I have seen and adore Ed’s artwork-clock, could use the website to many wicked ends and would love to be your next honorable judge.

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