Monday, October 20, 2008

Camp Concentration 022 – The Mind Reciprocator

(Francis Bacon Remix)

Mordecai Washington is a leader who can be alternately funny and cruel, sympathetic and haughty, admirable and ridiculous. We may take at face value his ressurrection through “The Mind Reciprocator”. He was pronounced dead and his body was buried, but in the end we discover that his soul survived and now inhabits another body. Thus he gains the dimensions of a Christ-like figure, even if he doesn’t exhibit some of the noble qualities we expect from it.

Sacchetti is a Catholic. He believes in the immortality of the Soul, he believes that his body is just a corporeal shell which must be discarded sooner or later if he wishes to ascend to Heaven. He believes that even if the Universe doesn’t seem to make sense for us, it makes sense for God, who oversees everything.

Well, the last thing I remember before I stripped and kneeled
Was that trainload of fools bogged down in a magnetic field.
A gypsy with a broken flag and a flashing ring
Said, "Son, this ain't a dream no more, it's the real thing."

Señor, Señor, you know their hearts is as hard as leather.
Well, give me a minute, let me get it together.
I just gotta pick myself up off the floor.
I'm ready when you are, Señor.

Señor, Señor, let's overturn these tables
Disconnect these cables,
This place don't make sense to me no more.
Can you tell me what we're waiting for, Señor?

(Bob Dylan, “Señor – Tales of Yankee Power”, 1978)

The characters involved in this Bob Dylan song suggest two narrative contexts. The first is a Western movie, like those by Sam Peckinpah, in which an American master and a Mexican servant enter together in some obscure, bloody and purposeless adventure. The servant if faithful, is compliant, is brave, but he’s a bit of a simpleton and doesn’t have access to the master’s plans. He’s prepared to die for him, nevertheless. He is a servant for the Yankee power.

The second context is that of a man alone, and the “Lord” whom he addresses is God. The man is lost and left to himself in a time of war, a time of technology gone awry. He is enslaved, mistreated, misled; he doesn’t know what is expected from him. But he is always asking: “Tell me, Lord, will this make any sense, in the very end?”

Sacchetti is capable of many harsh words against his Lord, but when is ressurrected himself, he reverts to the most basic affirmation of faith: the Bible. It is in item 94 of Book Two (p. 167):

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

Sacchetti remains in character even in this most glorious moment of one’s life, the moment of ressurrection from a certain death – he compares his own happiness to “some gigantic benevolent steamroller”. But the Biblical quotations and the joyful, almost childish happiness are understandable. He feels as if his Lord had, at least, taken him by the hand.

1 comment:

Jú Almeida said...

Sacchetti seems a strong man with firm ideas and noble heart. but .... would it be only when convenient? I believe in God but i dont know how i would react in front of great desperation .I hope to have the huge mind and heart.
I have fear of the world i confess but i am here and here i go.
I love to read your articles Mr Braulio.
here is my personal contact .. if wanna talk ..its a pleasure to acept you on my list friends.
Ju_ninaalmeida@hotmail.com
and my orkut link ...http://www.orkut.com.br/Main#Profile?uid=17690546326886850816&rl=t
thanks once again,for you great job.
tak care.
hug.
see ya.