Theodore Ushev “Romance Sonámbulo / The Sleepwalker”

Fans of Joan Miró and 20th century surrealism will delight in this frenetic (and wordless) interpretation of “Romance Sonámbulo” by revered Spanish poet Federico García Lorca created by Theodore Ushev a Bulgarian animator/designer/artist based in Montreal.

Channeling Miró for the piece turns out to be entirely appropriate as Lorca was not only the painter’s countryman and contemporary but also an adoring fan – as the always-interesting site Open Culture points out, Lorca is on record as pronouncing Miró’s paintings “the purest of all images.”

The irrepressible music track is “Opa Hey!” by contemporary Bulgarian composer Kottarashky (aka Nikola Gruev).

You can read the full poem in English below.

Ushev_Sonámbulo Lorca | STASH MAGAZINE

Ushev_Sonámbulo Lorca | STASH MAGAZINE

Ushev_Sonámbulo Lorca | STASH MAGAZINE

Ushev_Sonámbulo Lorca | STASH MAGAZINE

Animation: Theodore Ushev
Music: Kottarashky
Production: Unité Centrale
Distribution: Bonobostudio (International)

ROMANCE SONAMBULO
Federico García Lorca

Green, how I want you green.
Green wind. Green branches.
The ship out on the sea
and the horse on the mountain.
With the shade around her waist
she dreams on her balcony,
green flesh, her hair green,
with eyes of cold silver.
Green, how I want you green.
Under the gypsy moon,
all things are watching her
and she cannot see them.

Green, how I want you green.
Big hoarfrost stars
come with the fish of shadow
that opens the road of dawn.
The fig tree rubs its wind
with the sandpaper of its branches,
and the forest, cunning cat,
bristles its brittle fibers.
But who will come? And from where?
She is still on her balcony
green flesh, her hair green,
dreaming in the bitter sea.

—My friend, I want to trade
my horse for her house,
my saddle for her mirror,
my knife for her blanket.
My friend, I come bleeding
from the gates of Cabra.
—If it were possible, my boy,
I’d help you fix that trade.
But now I am not I,
nor is my house now my house.
—My friend, I want to die
decently in my bed.
Of iron, if that’s possible,
with blankets of fine chambray.
Don’t you see the wound I have
from my chest up to my throat?
—Your white shirt has grown
thirsty dark brown roses.
Your blood oozes and flees a
round the corners of your sash.
But now I am not I,
nor is my house now my house.
—Let me climb up, at least,
up to the high balconies;
Let me climb up! Let me,
up to the green balconies.
Railings of the moon
through which the water rumbles.

Now the two friends climb up,
up to the high balconies.
Leaving a trail of blood.
Leaving a trail of teardrops.
Tin bell vines
were trembling on the roofs.
A thousand crystal tambourines
struck at the dawn light.

Green, how I want you green,
green wind, green branches.
The two friends climbed up.
The stiff wind left
in their mouths, a strange taste
of bile, of mint, and of basil
My friend, where is she—tell me—
where is your bitter girl?
How many times she waited for you!
How many times would she wait for you,
cool face, black hair,
on this green balcony!
Over the mouth of the cistern
the gypsy girl was swinging,
green flesh, her hair green,
with eyes of cold silver.
An icicle of moon
holds her up above the water.
The night became intimate
like a little plaza.
Drunken “Guardias Civiles”
were pounding on the door.
Green, how I want you green.
Green wind. Green branches.
The ship out on the sea.
And the horse on the mountain.

More about the film: bonobostudio.hr/en/film/distribution/sonambulo

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