¿Acaso no todos esperamos como perros?

sad dog

Hay una escena de la película Boda polaca (2000) que, sin duda, llama fuertemente la atención: aquélla en la que la esposa sale de casa y el perro se queda esperándola, mirando a la calle desde la ventana del segundo piso.

Escena que se repetirá a lo largo del film y que, cuando la esposa haya dejado por otro hombre al hombre que interpreta el actor Gabriel Byrne, se verá repetida con una variante: ahora el esposo esperará junto al perro, mirando a la calle desde la ventana del segundo piso, esperando su improbable regreso.

Algo sublime y nostálgico en la espera de los perros y en la espera de quienes aman inexorablemente a alguien que no regresará, adquiere consistencia en la mente cuando se ve esta cinta: se trata de un gesto de fidelidad a toda prueba que, en el caso de los canes, va incluso más allá de la muerte, y que, en el caso de quienes aman sin esperanza, es capaz de llevarlos a ella.

Basada en una historia real, en un hecho ocurrido en Japón por los años veinte, el Japón que ha sufrido la destrucción del mundo como era conocido por ellos y que ni por eso lloraban. El argumento de Siempre a tu lado (2009), película que protagoniza Richard Gere, es el de un hombre que un día se encuentra un perro abandonado en una estación de trenes y decide adoptarlo.

Todos los días, sin que se le haya enseñado, Hachikō acompaña a Richard Gere hasta la estación, vuelve a casa y regresa a la hora en que él arribará del trabajo. Sin embargo, luego de ser presa de un paro cardíaco en la escuela en que impartía una cátedra de música, el hombre no regresará más, lo que no impedirá que su perro le espere noche y día durante más de nueve años hasta el instante de su propia muerte.

Mi abuelo, originario de Pichátaro, un pueblo cerca de Nahuatzen, me contaba que a los trece, cuando se escapó de la casa de su padre porque éste se había casado con otra mujer a la muerte de su madre, tenía siete perros y que cuando volvió de visita un par de años después, recién matriculado en la escuela, le habían dicho que todos murieron “de tristeza”, negándose a comer.

Es bien sabido que en las primeras batallas, Alejandro Magno se hacía acompañar por su perro Peritas que le cuidaba y que incluso dio la vida por él, ante lo que Alejandro, el rey del imperio más grande que el mundo haya visto (después de Asoka), lloró como una colegiada sin consuelo a la que no le baja la regla.

Se dice que Alejandro siempre lloraba de todo, pero el hecho de llorar por su perro me parece altamente justificado. Si no, pregúntenle a Luis Manuel Paz con su perro Ramón.

A últimas fechas, cuando voy al billar (vicio recién redescubierto), la chica que atiende la barra aprovecha su soledad matutina y se pone a ver por la ventana durante todo el rato que dura el juego: su gesto me recuerda el de un perro que está esperando a que alguien regrese; me recuerda las palabras de Gaston Bachelard: “para la mente, un muerto es sólo alguien que está ausente”. Su gesto recuerda que cuando alguien muere o se va para nunca más volver, aquél que lo extraña y le necesita siente su presencia en todas las cosas que le rodean casi como si de un momento a otro fuera a reaparecer.

Bubolina, el personaje de Zorba el griego (1964) podría ser la encarnación del que ama sin esperanza; personificación que, igualmente, podría quedar simbolizado por esa mujer del muelle de San Blas en Nayarit que tan célebre hizo la canción homónima del grupo jalisciense Maná.

Los griegos lo ponían en los siguientes términos: Elpís, la esperanza o la simple espera, sin que los modernos sepan cómo traducir el nombre de ese don que se quedó en el fondo de la caja de Pandora cuando ésta fue abierta, trayendo todas las desgracias al mundo.

Elpís, ¿esperanza para el que ama o una simple espera tras la que no sucederá nada? ¿Hay alguna diferencia entre las dos interpretaciones? El primero de los enigmas de Sor Juana parece fundirlas a ambas en una sola: “¿Cuál es aquella homicida/ que, piadosamente ingrata/ siempre en cuanto vive mata/ y muere cuando da vida?”.

El personaje de Boda polaca responde, cuando le preguntan por qué sigue esperando al borde de la ventana como su propio perro: “¿acaso no esperamos todos como perros?”.

OZ/IM

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