• Carolina Quiroga-Stultz

30 - Latina Authors


A young woman has joined the "Secret Association of Girls Good-for-Nothing in Defense of their Interests," whose sole objective is to find a husband. In the comments, we talk about the literary and intellectual career of Argentine Alfonsina Storni, who through her satirical prose reflected on the role and rights of women.

#English, #LatinAmericanliterature, #AlfonsinaStorni, #Argentina, #ArgentineLiterature, #Feminism, #Feminist, #FeministPoetry, #ArgentinePoetry, #FemaleVote, #Modernity, #Fashion, #WomenJournalists




The She-Wolf

Poem by Alfonsina Storni

Translated by Jim Normington

I am like the she-wolf.

I broke with the pack

And fled to the mountains

Tired of the plain.

I have a son, the outcome of love without marriage,

For I couldn't be like the others, another ox

With its neck in a yoke, I hold my proud head high!

I plow through underbrush with my own hands.

Look how they laugh and point at me

Because I've said "The Little sheep bleat

When the she-wolf enters the corral

Because they know the she-wolf came out of the wilds."

Poor Little tame sheep in a flock!

Don't fear the she-wolf, she will not harm you.

But also, don't belittle her, her teeth are Sharp

And in the forest, she learned to be sly.

The she-wolf will not steal your shepherd, do not fear;

I know you were warned and that you are afraid,

But without reason, for the she-wolf

Doesn't know how to steal; her teeth are weapons of death.

She entered the corral out of desire

To see why the Flock was frightened

And how they hide their fear behind laughter

Their every gesture betraying a strange sorrow…

Go see if maybe you can face the she-wolf

And steal her cub but don't go with the flock

Or follow a shepherd…

Go alone! Oppose her courage with power and strength!

Little sheep show me your teeth. How tiny they are!

You poor Little ones can't go anywhere without your masters

Through the rugged mountains, because if a tiger waits for you

You're defenseless and will die in the wilds.

I am like the she-wolf. I travel alone and I laugh

At the flock. I exist on my wages and they're mine

Wherever I decide to go, for I have hands

That know what Works is and my mind is sound.

She who can follow me can come along.

But I am on foot, facing the enemy,

And I don't fear life or its fatal rage

Because I have in my hand a knife which is always ready.

My son comes first, then me and them whatever happens.

Destiny may call me quickly to the struggle.

Sometimes there's the illusion of the bud of love

Which I know how to stifle before its flowers.

I am like the she-wolf.

I broke with the pack

And fled to the mountains

Tired of the plain.

Welcome


Greetings dear listeners of Tres Cuentos, the podcast dedicated to the literary, historical, and traditional narratives of Latin America. I am Carolina Quiroga-Stultz. In today's episode, we will explore the satirical prose of Argentine author Alfonsina Storni. Jim Normington translated the poem you just heard, and you can find it in the book Alfonsina Storni, Selected Poems, published by White Wine Press in 1987. The voice reading Alfonsina's poem “The She-Wolf” is Julie Lopez, host of the LA Mami Life a Family, Lifestyle blog.


Once more, I must confess that until recently I knew little or nothing about Alfonsina Storni. So how do I end up reading her work? Well, a couple of months ago, I told my mother about the topic of Latina Authors. She said,Ah! Mija, so how about Alfonsina Storni?” I said, “Who?” She replied, “The Argentine poet who committed suicide.”


I wondered: Is that the same Alfonsina from the Mercedes Sosa song? But at first, I only found her poetry. Frustrated, I thought, didn't she write anything else? For a couple of days, I put her aside, but Alfonsina is persistent. Her voice whispered: “I wrote more than those verses.” Soon, I found the book Alfonsina Storni: Nosotras y la piel, (We women and the skin), published by Alfaguara. And from this insightful book comes today's cuento or story.


In this English episode, we had the collaboration of Julita Rusiñol reviewing my translation of the Alfonsina’s story and the voice of Paz Ellis, doing the narration.


Alfonsina Storni's shrewdness made her an observer and protagonist of her time, leaving a printed mark that transformed the lives of many. From her poetry and prose, Alfonsina expressed who she wanted to be, a frank but caring voice that spoke to and for women.

Diary of a girl good-for-nothing, May 23, 1919

By Alfonsina Storni Adapted and translated by Carolina Quiroga-Stultz and Julita Rusiñol

This morning when I woke up, I remembered that someone said that a fulfilled man should, in life, have a child, plant a tree, and write a book.


I am not often very inclined to follow anyone's thoughts, but I liked this one... So green are the leaves on the trees... they have so many leaves... Someday I'm going to enjoy myself counting the leaves on a tree.


I have also thought that a fulfilled woman should write her diary: all great women have done so; Moreover, some became great after publishing their diary...

Starting today, then, I begin to write my diary; I will put in it all my intimate thoughts, my fears, my desires... my most important moments.


I'll start with today...

What happened to me today?

Nothing.

I have been happy all day...

I have not been bored...

Oh, I was forgetting! At three in the afternoon I felt a sharp pain in my foot.

Is this in bad taste?

Does good taste have to do with psychology?

I'll think about it seriously.

Spring of 1919…


This afternoon I have received the most interesting decalogue, from my friend Mochita. It turns out that a "Secret Association of Girls Good-for-Nothing for the Defense of their Interests" has been established.


The Association has formulated a complete program and its subjects must accept this decalogue:

1. Chase after a boyfriend above all things.

2. Do not go on a chase in vain.

3. Sanctify the "festivals."

4. Glorify Gold and Luxury.

5. Kill with silence.

6. Do not steal from a friend a poor boyfriend.

7. Do not sneeze (especially in front of men, because girls look very ugly.)

8. Do not slip false testimonies unless in a compliment, and do not lie when one can be uncovered.

9. Do not lust after a friend's husband before he becomes a widower.

10. Do not covet more than that which can be obtained while preserving the honor.


(The following are accessories to the decalogue, with very interesting details.)

I ponder:

The decalogue is not bad, but this Mochita is a little unhinged... who dares forbid to steal a poor boyfriend?


Is it such a desire to make the ink manufacturers earn money?


And I write this because I believe that this frankness of mine expresses my intimate psychology, and I must not forget the recipe to transform a good-for-nothing girl into a great woman...

November 4


I come from the secret meeting: and I am shaken...

I am 25 years old...

Horror!

Starting tomorrow I will be chasing a man, small or large, thin, or thick, blond or dark-haired. The country needs my maternal instinct.

My God! inspire me!

November 6


The choice of garment is something very important when chasing after a fiancé (this is what the decalogue accessories say). So, for tomorrow's feast I must choose appropriately: pink suits me very well my eyes shine brighter, it highlights the darkness of my hair... White!... Oh, white looks divine on me... I look like one of the little angels who dance in the sky under trees full of golden buns...


But lilac... lilac is my favorite color... lilac were the dark circles on Margarita Gautier.

(We can talk about Margarita Gautier because she repented.)


This does not fit into the decalogue, but why don't we make some exceptions to the decalogue?


Don't they say that in women everything is "an exception."

I choose the lilac dress then... Oh, now I think it has a very pronounced cleavage...

I am going to check the decalogue accessories:

It says: "It is preferable that the cleavage is discreet: chiffon is very important when chasing a fiancé."


Yes, I will add two centimeters of chiffon to the cleavage, because I infer (this word is very little used among girls), because I infer that centimeters are a very serious thing in female life. Have I ever written flattery worthy of a great woman!

November 7


Oh, I have had a fit of rage...

I thought I had caught him last night... I thought it for a moment.

I used, with discretion, the notions acquired in the Secret Association...

But I am convinced that now I stumbled upon a fool.


After the first skirmishes, he began to observe me as if he had me under a microscope.

Ugh! These professionals are unbearable. Now they are on to great things.

They have lost the simplicity of heart. They are not able to feel, just at first glance, an overwhelming, blind passion.


If I could find men like those from times past!

Then yes to the decalogue!...

Oh, but I do not despair in finding my better half.

I will get even...

I hate men with a scalpel and a microscope.

November 9


I have not touched my diary in a few weeks... the days are going one by one... I am a little bored.


Mochita came to see me yesterday. She said that the decalogue has been of great help to her...

She is getting married this summer.

And she is marrying well.

What a charming girl!

Days ago, she added this maxim as the motto of the Secret Association: "women were born to develop a moral and educational action."

I do believe it!

December 20


I am nervous, I am febrile... one more month and I turn 26...

What a stupid afternoon!

It rains.

December 25


I have a great plan... to the mountains we go... and with us goes... oh! I keep the name to myself... there are things that should not be desecrated. Above all, modesty...

Yesterday we were given new lessons at the Secret Association; all things get harder every day...

We must move forward...

Things change. It is impossible not to follow all these things...

January 15


Eureka!

I caught it... I caught it!

He is a man; Hear it... know it future humanity; what I've caught is a man...

(O gods, I beg you not to confuse him with a cricket.)

January 25


My diary, I am saying goodbye to you for a few months...

I owe myself to the decalogue...

I have stopped being a woman; I am a decalogue in action.

Day by day, night by night, I owe myself to the sacred repetition: : Chase after a boyfriend over all things... The 2: etc., etc.

Commentary


Dear listeners, it is time to talk about the chronicles of Alfonsina Storni. But before I delight you with the life and work of this great woman, I am pleased to introduce you to the contributors of this episode, in order of appearance.


From left to right: Julie Lopez, Julita Rusiñol and Paz Ellis


Julie Lopez, who read the initial poem of the “She Wolf,” is a Los Angeles-based Latina Mom and host of LA Mami Life a Family and Lifestyle blog. LA Mami Life shares Julie’s motherhood experience from the Millennial Latina perspective. Today the program includes weekly live interview in Spanish, where she invites experts to talk about their subject matter on Facebook Live, in this way providing the community with resources and information. You can find out more at: https://lamamilife.com/home/


Julita Rusiñol, who helped in the translation of the story “A diary of a girl good-for-nothing,” is an Argentinean certified interpreter, translator, and a dear friend who currently helps the Latino community in Tennessee.


Paz Ellis is a photographer, entrepreneur, and self-published author. She recently released an updated second edition of her book: Plantains and the Seven Plagues-A memoir: Half-Dominican, Half-Cuban, and Full Life. The book will be soon available in Spanish too. You can check more about Paz and her book at: www.pazellis.com


You can find more information about our female voices on our website: www.trescuentos.com

Now, let’s briefly hear Julie Lopez’s invitation to listen and watch her blog LA Mami Life.


*

Let us start then. Interestingly for a long time, Alfonsina Storni was known both by her contemporaries and by her readers, as a sentimental author. But as we heard, there is not much sentimentalism in the poem "The She-Wolf" or in the prose "Diary of a girl good-for-nothing." On the contrary, the parody and criticism she makes of women and society are evident. So, why did she earn the title of a sentimental poet?


During her life, the author published different books of poetry, gave recitals, won awards and recognition for her verses, and was even a teacher of reading and declamation. However, her vastly fragmented prose published in different newspapers was somehow forgotten. But now we know that her literary and intellectual production was always an important and revealing part of Alfonsina's thinking and conviction. The truth is that the more than a hundred articles she wrote have not fully been collected in book form.


Graciela Queirolo tells us in her article, "A Female Modernity: The Chronicles of Alfonsina Storni," that the poet was part of "a generation of Latin American intellectual women who throughout the 1920s to 1950s expressed in their writings new female subjectivities as a result of their experiences in emerging modern culture." In other words, they were talking about the inner life of women, about their most intimate thoughts.


This modernity, which to many sounds like something new, progressive, and beneficial, brought significant changes to the world and all its inhabitants. Life itself, for most of those who had no inheritance or ancestry was never easy, and modernity complicated their lives even more.


From an early age, Storni' had to help her parents in the family businesses that did not prosper. When her father died, she had to work full time.


In 1907, while working in a cap factory, Alfonsina joined Manuel Cordero's theatre company, and went on tour the following year. By 1909 Alfonsina entered the School of Rural Teachers in Coronda, where she also worked as a warden to make ends meet. On weekends, she performed in a small theater in Rosario. In 1910, Storni graduated and soon began teaching.


That same year, Alfonsina began publishing her poems in the local magazines of Rosario. This was her entrance into the literary circles of the city. In 1912 Alfonsina became a single mother, and for the next three years, she worked in a pharmacy, and in an oil import company. During this time, she published her first book of verses: La inquietud del rosal (The concerns of the rose, 1916) and collaborated with the publications Caras y Caretas, La Nota, El Hogar, Mundo Argentino, and Nosotros.


From then on, she continued to publish poetry, and diverse articles in newspapers, performed in recitals, and worked in various positions. She had to take these different jobs at the same time just to survive. And if we think about it, a hundred years later, things have not changed much.


Domesticity and work


Rumors say that Alfonsina hoped to become a poet. Her journalism was nothing more than an opportunity to make extra money, and to exercise her critical thinking skills on an ongoing basis.


Alfonsina was a woman of initiative, was resourceful and possessed an acute intelligence. Everything around her gave her plenty to write about. The stage of this so-called modern culture allowed her to display her analytical thinking – that is, to see what others did not see within the chaos, the positivism of progress, and the accelerated political, social, and economic changes of the early twentieth century.


Queirolo tells us that modernity brought by industrial capitalism that accompanied the first part of the twentieth century "gave rise to the ideology of domesticity" – the concept of "separate spheres" for men and women. Therefore, the woman was, able to participate more, but with restrictions due to her female condition—a condition linked to her biology, her fragility, a tendency to foolishness and weakness of character.


For example, Queirolo quotes Marcela Nari (1996), saying that the medical discourse helped turn motherhood into the feminine essence. Procreation was then natural to our gender and the highest ambition. Because of this way of thinking, many social sectors opposed the idea of factory-working women, arguing that such work interfered with motherhood.

Then, those women who were not satisfied with domestic work and the role of wives and mothers, and chose another path, were morally suspicious. This reminds me of the times I heard older men refer to their wives as: she is a good housewife! The funny thing is, not long ago, I heard a young man saying the same thing about his wife as if he had nothing more to say about her.


Queirolo explains that, despite the criticism of working women, there was also a need for female labor, and it was even encouraged. But only as a result of "spinsterhood, widowhood, necessity or as a temporal activity, which would be abandoned after marriage and motherhood."


In was in this sphere of domesticity that Alfonsina decided to advocate for the working woman, the single mother, the migrant woman, and for those to whom domesticity was like a cage.


Let me share with you one of Alfonsina's most famous poems that expresses the suffocation imposed on women. Mary Crow and Marion Freeman translated this poem in the book Alfonsina Storni, Selected Poems, published by White Wine Press (1987).


Little bitty man, little bitty man,

Let your canary loose that wants to fly away.

I am the canary, little bitty man,

let me go free.

I was in your cage, little bitty man,

little bitty man who gives me a cage.

I say little because you don't understand me,

And never will.

Nor do I understand you, but meanwhile

Open the cage, for I want to be free.

Little bitty man, I loved you for half an hour.

Ask no more of me.

Tao Lao


Indeed, poetry was a tool through which Alfonsina Storni subtly questioned patriarchalism, but also questioned the choices and ambitions of her female contemporaries.


Queirolo says that "Storni took over these spaces, and mocked the procedures of control of speech, thanks to a series of strategies."


One such strategy was Tao Lao. In most of her collaborations with other newspapers, the author signed her articles as Alfonsina Storni. For example, the text at the beginning of the episode "Diary of a girl good-for-nothing" was signed as such. However, the articles she published in the newspaper La Nación (1920), were signed as Tao Lao.


Queirolo tells us that the tone used in the newspaper La Nación was that of "the informative and seemingly trivial chronicle." Maybe because the section where Storni wrote for that diary was called "Bocetos Femeninos" (Female Sketches), a Sunday supplement that published recipes, notes on European fashion trends, announcements of social events, anniversaries, quinceañeras, marriages, and births. It is within this social display that Alfonsina presents the different characters of the modern urban culture, writing from the masked pen of the widower Tao Lao.


Let us clarify that this masking is not the product of any fear of censorship. In the past, other women published their writings under male names given social restrictions. Yet, this is not the case. She had published in many other newspapers - in some cases using a controversial tone- but always assuming authorship.


The pseudonym of Tao Lao allows Alfonsina to enter another sphere, the male one. It grants her access to the group of multiple male voices that talked about women and for women—those who suggested that women should stay in their place. Tao Lao is subtly paternal, seems to speak to both sexes, but plants seeds in his female readers, seeds of doubt about what so many men in their lives have assured them for so long.


Tania Diz tells us in her article "Identity, body, and mutation. The journalistic columns of Alfonsina Storni in La Nación" that Tao Lao's goal was instead to "put the controversy aside and camouflage herself in a masculine appearance and, from there, through irony, subvert those statements considered truths and let reason manifest itself."


I will read to you an excerpt from an article published on October 17, 1920, signed by Tao Lao, titled: "Las lectoras," (The Lady Readers).


"A significant number of women have a marked preference for women's literature: novel and verse. It can be inferred from this quick annotation that the lady's preferred reading is fine according to her intimate nature. She wants to feel without thinking too much: mystical, sentimental, psychological, romantic, passionate literature, behold her preferences, generally demanding that reading speaks to her imagination, to her dreams, to her psychological problems, rather than to reason.


The vast majority of men do not escape this rule either, but what should be pointed out as characteristic of the lady reader is that it remains in a certain medium: it neither ascends to great literature nor descends to the lousy one, and clearly reads to delight, entertain and not to know, thus, systematically avoiding scientific reading..."


If you still cannot grasp Tao Lao's subversive intent, I will read another excerpt from an article published on September 26, 1920, which is called: "¿Existe un problema femenino? " (Is there a female problem?)


"So, women and men, are saying that there is a female problem, but if we remove the divider adjective, we see that there is no female problem; that there is only a human problem…Suppose that children no longer bear the surname of the fathers and that men are not in a moral obligation to attend to the subsistence of the family.


The man, in this case, would have lost all his authority over the woman. This absolute disintegration, which would force women to seek their own livelihoods inescapably, would have solved the female problem."


Interestingly after a hundred years, we are still in the mud trying to solve the female problem and the family dilemma.


Feminists


And why were they talking about the female crisis, the human and family crisis a hundred years ago?


Quoting Dora Barrancos, Tania Diz says that "the period between wars was a long transition for the female status in general, but especially for the many women who carried out productive tasks within the home and especially for those who left it to carry out jobs. Thus, doubting the harsh mandate of devoting herself to the family. During this period, women's work expanded in the magisterium, services, houses of commerce, manufacturing, and industry."


Of course, Storni was not going to let this one go, without expressing her sharp thinking about the brave women who dared to work rather than stay home, who dared to think for themselves. In the article "Un libro quemado," (A Burnt Book) published on June 27, 1919, signed with her name, the author exposes the danger of recognizing herself feminist.


She says, "The word feminist, 'so ugly,' even now, tends to shiver the human souls. When it is said 'feminist,' some women see perched upon the word a face with broken teeth and a shrill voice. However, there is no normal woman of our day who is not more or less feminist. She may not wish to participate in the political struggle. Still, from the moment she thinks and discusses aloud the advantages or mistakes of feminism, she is already a feminist, for feminism is the exercise of women's thinking..."


The latter makes me think that the word ‘feminism’ is still a tricky word that frightens more than one woman. And since no one wants to be considered unpleasant, it is easier to mute ourselves, to look the other way, before the finger that judges make us feel like outcasts.


It is striking that the image of the judging finger looks like an extension of a male arm. The interesting thing is that there are cases where it is the same women who censor their peers.

Tao Lao tells us in the article "La mujer enemiga de la mujer" (The women enemy of women), published on May 22, 1921, that: "It is not but curious that being men the least morally damaged by their violations of ordinary morality, they have established this tacit solidarity, while women, more in need of mercy, understanding, and forgiveness...are... systematic enemies. Mothers, whose special condition should open their hearts.... they hardly forgive the single mother."


Storni goes on to say in the same text: "The hostility of women to women is due to the absence of education of character and a lack of good mental discipline. A natural competition has established itself since ancient times among women, forcing them to stand out over others, of appearing to be more beautiful, more virtuous, more elegant than their competitors, forcing them to exaggerate the defect or the moral failure of the enemy."


And it seems that not much has changed since the days when Alfonsina watched with amazement and astonishment the war of women against women. Just watch those reality shows of Housewives or Bachelors; for many there is value and entertainment in watching women fighting and verbally destroying each other.


Women's vote and self-determination


Regarding these topics, in 1919, from the columns of La Nota magazine, Alfonsina said: "Why would women have the right to vote? When in the eyes of the law she is affected by relative disabilities that disqualify her from acting in public affairs and wills, to administer her assets; and if married, to tutor her younger siblings or nephews, to practice some specific professions, such as public scribe, or a broker? It matters, first, that the law reconsiders and erases these disabilities, very logical in other times when the economic life was different..."


Many of these restrictions that Storni talks about have been resolved in many countries. Although it is surprising that, despite this, there are still some women that prefer to silence their vote not to anger their partner. In other words, so as not to disturb the family peace.

In the past, this was justified in fear of altering economic stability, what Storni called: "economic cowardice," the terror that many had over destabilizing or leaving the domestic world and having to fend for themselves.


I remember my mother once told me about a dear friend of hers, who had decided to divorce. My mother suffered for her. In my mother's mind and many other women of her generation, her friend could not support her family on her own. That was a social suicide, who was going to give her a hand, who was going to employ her. The truth is, it was not easy for my mom's friend, but she made it. And I wonder: how many women have not been caught up in that same fear?


In her 2004 dissertation Alfonsina Storni: Analysis and contextualization, Claudia Edith Méndez writes that for Storni to vote or not to vote was not going to change anything substantially. What needed to be done before guaranteeing the vote was to "end the idea of women's 'incapacity' and assure her the same economic rights than men. What needed to change was the right to work, a fair wage, and the complete protection of the law. Without these changes, the female vote 'would add to equation an inept to another inept' as men vote for a particular party out of sympathy, hoping for immediate economic benefits."


If only Alfonsina knew that women still earn less than men. What is surprising is that in a country like the United States that talks so much about freedom and rights, the Supreme Court recently cleared the way for the Trump administration to expand exemptions for employers who have religious or moral objections to fulfill the contraceptive mandate under Obama Care. That is, employers can deny women access to a birth control plan through the company's health insurance.


Claudia Edith Méndez goes on to say that, "true liberation will come from women themselves, the important thing is to live the public and the private spheres in complete coherence. Avoiding contradictions between what is said and what is done." Alfonsina already said it: "714,000 women are working in the Republic! All these women who are qualified to make a living, and who represent considerable force, deserve, at the very least, the respect and intelligence of lawmakers."


For the author, the democracy we defend does not depend on the right to vote, but on the willingness to participate, act, and even protest. Storni considers the vote insignificant because you learn by participating. Think about it for a moment, the latest protests that have shaken the country have led to more positive changes than the vote.


Fashion and modernity


Now, I wonder what it meant to be a modern woman? Apparently, for many women of the Alfonsina era, being modern was not just voting and working, but being trendy.


In her 2016 article, "Girls of Buenos Aires and figurines of Paris: fashion and modernity in the chronicles of Alfonsina Storni," Catalina Olea says that "For many women, the fashion boom represented nothing more than a new form of alienation... (in other words, a new suit for the same role)."


The author says that other women like Storni saw in this chaotic phenomenon of masses that fashion represented, new forms of expression that moved away from the patriarchal model. Alfonsina took advantage of the topic to question the fascination with novelty, progress, and the loss or lack of personality.


In this regard, Storni wrote: "If you look at a boy, there is no need to look at others: they all give a special appearance of uniformity. It is the same hair pulled back and well-polished and tamed by greasy gels; they were the same necktie, the same suit, they have the same conversations, the same ideas. Are they children of a hole puncher that cuts them in one slash into life and throws them into family dances? At least the girls each have their little personality... this one has a nice smile, the other plays the piano well, and the other has an attractive blonde hair."


In line with this reflection, Catalina Olea stated that the media made natural the experience of modernity. By seducing female audiences with the idea of the "new woman," an image that promised the spotlight. The lady who is aware of the new trends is then an empowered female, a woman feared, admired, and desired. A woman envied by others for the perfect way in which she has managed to subordinate herself to the dictatorship of image and representation.


Within this city scenario, Storni highlights two figures, "the impersonal," and "the irreproachable." The first is the one that copies the trends, which it adopts "without consulting her comfort, nor her means." It is one whose personality is not distinguished from the image, the brand, or the pose. On the other side of the fashion ring, Storni places fashion's most loyal follower, "the irreproachable."


I will read you an excerpt from one of my favorite texts by Alfonsina, that like the others I have read throughout the episode, can be found in the book Alfonsina Storni, Nosotras y la Piel, published by the Alfaguara (1998).


The text is titled The Irreproachable, published on July 5, 1920.


It says "Benefactors of humanity are undoubtedly those skilled little women who spend half an hour in front of the mirror, nothing more than to curl their eyelashes and arch them in the opposite direction to the eyeball. Thus, correcting the work of the seemingly left-handed, that subtracted half a millimeter ellipse to their eye orbits...Those benefactors have certainly thought about the charitableness that is to offer to the eye of the pedestrian the beauty show of a bushy jungle of large eyelashes, in whose center two blue, or green, or grey, lagoons complete the illusion of a lavishing nature.


To reach such result, walnut, almond, castor oils, and other substances have been applied overnight to the root of each eyelash, like an irrigation canal that overflows the root of each tree and fertilize the land conducive to the new tree (or the new eyelash).


With this procedure, repeated for months, it has been achieved the increase of eight eyelashes per eye, if the calculation of a friend of mine does not deceive me, a considerable growth of the eyelash tree...


And if you see her at four o'clock in the afternoon, when she leaves her house, and you find her at seven, when she returns, you will notice that not a hair has moved from its place...

Here is a statistic of movements that a friend calculated, after three or four hours of being outside, it includes visits to shops and tea: Approximate number of moves that costs to maintain the irreproachability on the streets.


Looks in the mirror (this includes different classes, sizes, and moons) 25

Looks at the glasses of the shop window 60

Stretching gloves 12

Checking that the pins do not escape from their place 10

Lip moistening 30

Special adjustment of the bosom with a pull 5

Hands moving up to the hairpins that hold the veil 18

Face powder replenishment (very discreet) 2

Straightening of the stockings 2

Sneaky polishing of shoes by rubbing them against the back of the leg 6

Unexpected movements to adjust purses, necklaces, skirt folds, etc. 50

Total movements 220

This account makes us infer that, if, after two years of using this tactic to maintain street irreproachability, this aesthetic fervor reaches the prize of a husband, this husband would represent -in the assumption that the irreproachable had gone out nothing more than twice a week- about 45,000 appropriate movements, a lot of wear and tear for the muscles.


And so, who dares to claim that a man is worthless..."


Signed Tao Lao


And with this description of impeccability to make a good impression and hunt a good husband, we end the season of Latina Authors. We will be back in a couple of months to celebrate Hispanic American Heritage.


Until the next cuento, adiós, adiós.

Bibliography

  1. Nosotras… y la piel. Selección de ensayos de Alfonsina Storni. Compilación y prólogo Mariela Méndez, Gabriela Queirolo, Alicia Salomone. 1998. Alfaguara. Buenos Aires.

  2. Alfonsina Storni, Selected Poems. Edited by Marion Freeman. Translated by Marion Freeman, Mary Crow, Jim Normington, and Kay Short. White Pine Press, 1987.

  3. (Dissertation) Alfonsina Storni: Análisis y Contextualización del Estilo Impresionista en sus Crónicas, Claudia Edith Mendez. University of Maryland. 2004. URL: https://drum.lib.umd.edu/bitstream/handle/1903/1706/umi-umd-1659.pdf;jsessionid=614CAEFC481BCA485EB0EB878FC26D82?sequence=1

  4. “Muchachas de Buenos Aires y figurines de París: moda y modernidad en las crónicas de Alfonsina Storni,” Catalina Olea. Universidad de Chile. Meridional Revista Chilena de Estudios Latinoamericanos. Número 7, octubre 2016, 83-104. URL: https://www.academia.edu/29297278/Muchachas_de_Buenos_aires_y_figurines_de_Par%C3%ADs_moda_y_modernidad_en_las_cr%C3%B3nicas_de_alfonsina_storni

  5. “Identidad, cuerpo y mutación. Las columnas periodísticas de Alfonsina Storni en La Nación” Tania Diz. MORA, Vol. 1, núm, 1-12, 2006, pp. 122-136. URL: https://www.aacademica.org/tania.diz/10.pdf

  6. “Hombres fósiles, suegras terribles y niñas inútiles en la escritura periodística” Tania Diz. Revista Nuestra América. Revista de Estudios sobre la Cultura Latinoamericana n.2 – Cultura Argentina. Porto Agosto – diciembre 2006. URL: https://bdigital.ufp.pt/bitstream/10284/2369/3/155-167.pdf

  7. “Alfonsina Storni” Centro Virtual Cervantes. Instituto Cervantes (España), 2006-2020. URL: https://cvc.cervantes.es/actcult/storni/antologia/antologia01.htm

  8. “Una modernidad femenina: las crónicas de Alfonsina Storni.” Graciela Queirolo. Revista Feminaria Literaria. Año XII, No19 (abril 2007) pp.103. URL: https://www.academia.edu/38396991/Una_modernidad_femenina_las_cr%C3%B3nicas_de_Alfonsina_Storni

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