Sobre el piloto que escribía ―Saint-Ex―

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

 Un cielo puro como el agua bañaba las estrellas y las develaba.

Luego fue la noche. El Sahara se desplegaba duna a duna bajo la Luna

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Correo del sur

GONZALO TRINIDAD VALTIERRA |

Imagino un solitario piloto, protegido por esa segunda piel curtida al sol, acariciada por el viento y las constelaciones, sumando cientos de horas de diligencias muy por encima del suelo, pensando, mientras sujeta el timón de su nave, que “no se debe aprender a escribir, sino a ver. Escribir es una consecuencia”.

Desde la casa de las nubes —que pocos han gobernado— el mundo debe ser como el tablero de un juego, de dioses que juegan a ser niños.

Un día desapareció. Sin dejar rastro se desvaneció en medio de una tormenta siglo XX. Setenta años están por cumplirse ya sobre las dunas, mares, ríos y cadenas de  montañas que el solitario piloto, desde la cabina de su avión que preservara su cuerpo como el de un pequeño dios, casi con dulzura, devoraba con los ojos.

Un hombre sobre un ave mecánica, parecido a un mago que levita, atravesando como flecha el cielo, desde el Magreb hasta la Tierra del Fuego. Con nada más para calentarlo en las noches trasatlánticas que el fuego de sus alas.

Desde el cielo, los Andes y los Alpes son murallas hermanas separadas por un charco. Pero esto sólo lo comprende un aviador. Para Saint-Ex las geografías no eran cuestiones abstractas. Sino rodillas de gigantes o larguísimas serpientes de azules sin nombre.

Después de Saint-Ex ser piloto nunca ha sido mejor descrito: “No me lamento de las ráfagas de lluvia. La magia del oficio me abre un mundo donde haré frente, antes de dos horas, a los dragones negros y a las cabelleras coronadas de azules relámpagos, y llegada la noche, leeré mi camino en los astros”.

. .

Melancólico, Saint-Exupéry espera la hora fatal, aunque todas las horas son fatales cuando hay que olvidarse de la tierra para penetrar de lleno en reinos vedados a los mortales que renunciaron a sus alas para poder pensar con gravidez. Con seriedad. Con terquedad.

Pero no él. No el hombre de las aves mecánicas que gobernara con arrojo los cielos. Valiente que antes de escribir veía, como pocos, igualándose a los astros y cometas. Todos menos el solitario piloto que lleva mil amores en sacos de correo. Él es el hombre que sabe pensar ligero, para que el avión no caiga al suelo como las tautologías de los filósofos.

Escribía en el Café Lafayette, en Toulouse, o a las dos de la madrugada en Alicante, España, donde “todas las españolas son heroínas de ópera”, escribía en cualquier café que pudiera usar como estudio, sobre la arena del desierto, o recostado en el pasto peinado por el viento bajo la sombra de su nave; escribía: “si no regreso más que dentro de mucho tiempo con una larga barba blanca ya me habréis olvidado todos. Esto me desalienta porque no sé exactamente hacia dónde marcho. Alicante, Marruecos o Dakar, según la voluntad de los dioses”.

Sabía que cualquier día alguna falla ―por mínima que fuera en el aire sería fatal ― le arrebataría un poder que había disfrutado. El vuelo no es para los hombres, nos recuerdan constantemente las caídas, las rodillas raspadas, los aviones destrozados…

André Gide piensa de Saint-Exupéry, como de otros hombres de su generación, que en ellos yacían vetas de verdadero heroísmo, del que pocas épocas se jactan de tener en sobra. Quizá los griegos hayan sido de los que más tuvieron.

Piloto de línea y de guerra, ensayista, novelista y filósofo de acción, como lo ha llamado André Maurois. Dédalo de la literatura con final de Ícaro.

. .

Costas de Marsella. La bella Marsella. Una joya devuelta por el mar que devoró al terrible domador de rayos, ventarrones y tormentas, al piloto que vivió, como todos los de su época, “en la escala de los astros y los continentes”, en palabras de Maurois. El nombre del piloto grabado en el brazalete llegó a las redes de un pescador. Comenzó la búsqueda.

Años después se hallaron los restos del avión de Saint-Exupéry, su Lightning P38, irreconocibles, salvo por los números de matrícula. Los buzos lo descubrieron frente a las costas de Marsella. Ni rastro del piloto. Sólo el brazalete.

. .

Costa sur de Francia, 31 de julio, 1944

Verano sur de Francia. Horst Rippert despega desde algún lugar ignoto del siglo XX. Las alas de un ave negra que a nadie interesan auguran una jornada fatídica. Con apenas 24 años es un terror en el aire.

Bastia, Córcega

Casi al mismo tiempo, un Lightning P38 despega. Ronca el motor y ahoga el mundo con su estruendo. Empuja al mundo tras de sí, lo aparta con desdén porque está a punto de elevarse, de divorciarse de la pesadez del mundo. Si alguna vez han volado sabrán que el cuerpo se comporta diferente.

El capitán Antoine de Saint-Exupéry abandona el nido de Córcega en una misión de reconocimiento sobre Arras. En ese momento es él y todos los pilotos de sus novelas. No va solo. Aún así no hay hombre más solo en este mundo. Se escribe cartas a sí mismo. Y dialoga con invisibles amigos ignotos. Piensa que le importan porque los inventa. Habría que amar a todos los Saint-Exupéry de las novelas disfrazados de otros hombres y mujeres, para entender al verdadero.

3000 metros de altura

Un ave de caza de la Lüftwaffe divisa el ave de Saint-Exupéry que vuelve al nido. Una oportunidad para el joven piloto. ¿Quizá por honor? Después de todo el enemigo es inmundo e inhumano. Es la maldad. Hay que acabar con él. Horst Rippert descarga su odio, sus balas que están hechas de odio.

El problema de la guerra es que no sabes a quién estás matando. Horst Rippert no lo sabrá hasta más tarde. Vio caer un ave enemiga. Vio la picada. Y el vacío abrió brazos para recibir a un Saint-Exupéry, al que prepara una cama en el lecho marino. El vacío azul, hermano del cielo.

Horst Rippert se entera de la muerte del piloto que escribía. Sabe quién lo mató. No dice nada. Por décadas, un misterio deambula sobre las aguas de un mar que ha visto demasiadas guerras. Saint-Exupéry se desvaneció, dicen. Nunca dejó de volar, aún hay veces que lo ven cortando el cielo del mediterráneo, dirán otros.

Años después

Rippert, de 88 años, confiesa a un diario haber sido él quien derribara al autor de Vuelo nocturno. Se lamentó. Él también amaba el cielo, los vuelos que lo hacían olvidarse de los problemas que reptan el suelo y enredan nuestros pasos. Él también leyó cuando era niño El principito, de Saint-Exupéry. Sabe que el problema de la guerra es que no sabes a quién estás matando.

Imagino al solitario piloto que escribía, montado en sus alas, transmutado él mismo en un ala. Nunca se deja lo que se ama. Sus novelas lo proyectan de nuevo en la casa de las nubes.

. .

Le petit prince cumplió 70 años. Uno de los libros más leídos del mundo. ¿A expensas de qué? ―le pregunto a los entusiastas de la estadística.

El propio Horst Rippert, verdugo del escritor, leyó las aventuras del principito de cabellos dorados y traje añil. Todos lo hemos leído. Yo confieso que muchas veces. Pero el tierno y hermoso príncipe que tanto recomendamos y leemos merece un descanso. Después de todo, setenta años —sólo— se cuentan fácil. ¿Qué hay del novelista Saint-Exupéry? Raras veces escuchamos de él.

En México, no es conocido más allá de ser autor de El principito. Tristemente pasa lo mismo con muchos autores que se vuelven un libro. Por malicia de las editoriales o por omisión de un modelo de educación que está peleada consigo misma. Por políticas editoriales pensadas en vender y no en crear lectores.

Sería necesario, en el caso de Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, como en el caso de tantos escritores mexicanos y extranjeros, contemporáneos y de antaño, hacer espacios para sus trabajos, sin importar el género. En las condiciones en que vivimos esto puede sonar casi revolucionario. No lo es. Ni pretendo que lo sea. ¿Es que el mercado se nos ha metido hasta en los libros tanto, que decide qué leemos y que no? ¿Es que el relato de este pequeño viajero de los mares y de los cielos cósmicos nació para opacar a sus obras hermanas? No lo creo.

Para comprender la obra y comprender al hombre, hay que volar más alto, como él lo hubiera hecho. Y descender peligrosamente.

| RMM | GT | @Seliztli |

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