—Tía —dijo: —¿por qué esas mujeres tan mayores van al colegio?

—¿De qué mujeres hablas, Florita?

—De las señoritas de ahí enfrente, tía.

—¡Ah!, las señoritas de ahí enfrente. Te traen a ti muy preocupada, por lo que veo, las señoritas de ahí enfrente. Verás, en realidad, se trata de un colegio especial —carraspeó—: un colegio para señoritas descarriadas.

—¿Yo soy descarriada, tía?

—¡Jesús, qué disparate!

A las mejillas blancas, empolvadas, de la tía Cruz asomaba esta tarde un matiz sonrosado:

—Pues, ¿qué es descarriada, tía?

—Mira, Florita —dulcificó la voz con el propósito de quitar importancia al tema—: Hay señoritas que de niñas estuvieron abandonadas, y como no fueron educadas de pequeñas, hay que educarlas de mayores. Por eso van al colegio. ¿Has comprendido?

Madera de héroe, 1987

Ilustración de Claudia Ranucci sobre Madera de héroe de Miguel Delibes
Collage, cera y acrílico sobre papel

 

 

CLASSES STILL EXIST

Auntie,” she said, “why do those grown-up women go to school?”

“What women are you talking about, Florita?”

“Those young ladies across the street, Auntie”.

“Ah! The young ladies from across the street. I can see that you’re very concerned about the ladies from across the street. You see, the fact is that it’s a special sort of school”–here she coughed—“a school for young ladies who’ve lost their way”.

“Have I lost my way, Auntie?”

“Heavens, what a thing to say!”

On this afternoon a pinkish tinge rose into Aunt Cruz’s white powdered cheeks.

“What does it mean to lose your way, Auntie?”

“Look, Florita” –her voice took on a sugary tone to make the subject seem less important—“there young ladies who were abandoned when they were little girls, and since they weren’t educated when they were small, they have to be educated when they’re older. That’s why they go to school. Understand?”.

 

The Stuff of Heroes, 1987

Illustrated by Claudia Ranucci
Collage, wax and acrylic on paper