Imaginar es pensar II, por Alejandro Gándara


Puertas2. El género de la brevedad: el cuento

La brevedad del relato se refiere a un modo de percepción que hace que una realidad compleja sea resumida, sintetizada, estilizada en una de sus manifestaciones. Por ejemplo, las relaciones de una familia en una cena de Nochebuena (caso cuya desdicha no merma su valor ilustrativo). Por supuesto, la cosa no es tan sencilla, dado que implica una estrategia de percepción casi poética: un chispazo iluminador, una visión. No toda realidad es susceptible de este achicamiento. Las causas profundas de una desavenencia matrimonial no forman parte probablemente –y en principio- de un relato breve, pero el silencio hosco que se ha interpuesto en la pareja, su daño y el modo en que agrede sí puede verse brevemente mientras ambos esperan el tren de cercanías que les lleva al trabajo en la ciudad, se me ocurre. Creo que es interesante la propuesta de trabajar mentalmente con la posibilidad de abreviar una realidad amplia en una escena, un momento, o un espacio concreto – trabajo, hogar, intimidad…

Insisto en que es una forma de percibir sin la cual no es posible después trasladar la narración al género que nos atañe. Aunque finalmente este no sea el género al que se entregue la vida creativa, es un magnífico recurso de síntesis para la imaginación, que sirve para otros géneros y para otras cosas más cotidianas y necesarias. La imaginación sintética no es sólo un modo especializado de la imaginación general, sino una de las posibilidades no excluyentes de esa misma imaginación.

Otro ejercicio recomendable es registrar las impresiones que se reciben a lo largo del día: la cara de un camarero, el olor de un local, unas palabras que alguien dijo, un hombre paseando al perro, y tratar de explicarse más tarde por qué las hemos registrado. Se aprende mucho de cómo y por qué percibe uno, y al mismo tiempo se aprende a percibir de ese modo.

Si la impresión poética o rayo iluminador es la forma de la percepción, la técnica del relato sigue esa misma pauta. Un relato breve es la impresión desarrollada, el núcleo en expansión mediante el estallido de sus posibilidades y sólo de las posibilidades de ese núcleo. En este aspecto, un relato breve tiene mucho de juego de exploración, pero para que el juego resulte divertido debe uno atenerse a las reglas, que se reducen sustancialmente a una: no perder el núcleo de vista.

En muchas ocasiones el desarrollo de esas posibilidades nos lleva a lugares inciertos y sólo la intuición de la coherencia de ese desarrollo nos indica que hemos acertado, aunque no tengamos ni idea de por qué. Mientras que en una novela el autor sabe bastante, en un relato breve el autor puede llegar a saber bastante poco, incluso puede no llegar a saber en absoluto. Lo único que sabe es que eso es así. La forma en que lo sabe tiene por tanto bastante que ver con un cierto grado de extrañeza ante lo escrito, con algo que ha salido de su cabeza y que no coincide exactamente con lo que hay normalmente en su cabeza.

En este aspecto, un relato breve nunca es explicativo, ni discursivo, ni ilustrativo de nada en lo que se refiere al funcionamiento de la sesera del creador. Y desde luego no es una historieta con sus tramoyitas, intriguillas y misteriecillos.

Todo lo dicho anteriormente apunta al autor, a la forma de experimentar las cosas del autor como fundamento de la escritura. Si de la propia percepción se va al núcleo narrativo y de ahí a la imaginación de posibilidades, es fácil darse cuenta de que la percepción del cuentista es equivalente al sentimiento del poeta o del cantante que acaba traducido en letra y música (en ambos casos, tanto la palabra como la música interpretan sentimientos, de ahí la aparente unidad de estilo del poeta o del cantante). Bien, e insistiendo, lo que interpreta el relato breve es la forma de mirar del escritor. Por supuesto, también sucede así en la novela y en los otros modos retórico-poéticos, pero la diferencia es de grados y de intensidad. En el relato breve todo eso está pegado al cuerpo, es la piel del autor y del relato. El autor se ve en su relato a través de un juego de posibilidades salido de su percepción y de su imaginación. Dado que nuestra capacidad para mirar las cosas de manera diversa es más bien limitada, el resultado de la escritura produce una unidad casi estilística, pero que responde a causas profundas, cuyo conocimiento es más bien precario. El cuentista se canta a sí mismo –aunque lo exacto sería decir que canta de sí mismo-, porque no se conoce lo suficiente, y más que saber, lo que quiere es verse, aunque sea deformado por sus propias reglas.

Un apéndice sobre el natural recato del principiante. Siempre que se acaba en estas aguas, las inquietudes brotan en el alma del que se dispone a navegar. ¿Es que tengo que contar mi vida? Esta pregunta, producto de la soberbia del que todavía no ha hecho la prueba, tiende a sugerir que hay una vida que contar, a la vez que sugiere que los otros desean escucharla con el alma en vilo y las fauces desbordando saliva. Pero sobre todo contiene algunos errores de bulto.

En primer lugar, no hay ninguna vida que contar a no ser que la cuentes. La vida contada es idéntica a la vida contada, pero no a la vida que se ha vivido. Contarla la deforma, la interpreta y la traslada a una naturaleza distinta de la suya, como es la del lenguaje.

En segundo lugar, la experiencia de un individuo es básicamente vicaria, es decir, la vivida por otros. De ahí nuestro aprendizaje, consistente más que nada en saber qué han aprendido los demás. (No necesito tirarme de un quinto piso para saber que no va a sentarme bien, ni necesito ir a la India para saber que la nouvelle cuisine no está inspirada en el menú diario de sus habitantes). Vicario significa que somos fundamentalmente los otros (ideas, prejuicios, creencias, vida cotidiana, estrategias de besar) y no cuesta nada deducir que lo que nos impresiona y percibimos lo hace también por relación con nuestro aprendizaje, que es experimentar lo de los otros. Te puede impresionar lo que le ha sucedido a alguien con más fuerza que si te sucediera a ti. (Pasa con la enfermedad y pasa cuando gana el Real Madrid). Por tanto, forma parte de ti todo lo que experimentas, toda experiencia asumida.

En tercer lugar, la única prueba segura de originalidad, y que es absolutamente necesaria para que los otros escuchen y también para justificar que los demás le escuchen a uno, es que uno se sumerja en su experiencia, ya que la propia experiencia puede ser compartida con otros (el amor o la dificultad para llegar a fin de mes), pero no se puede experimentar por otros, ya que su carácter es básicamente intransitivo (pruébese a compartir el dolor de estómago con un ser amado: se observará que el otro se pone triste, pero que no le duele en el mismo sitio y que a menudo ni siquiera le duele).

Continuará…

  1. #1 by siba on 5/Mar/2012

    Gracias por compartir estos textos. Tienen mucho que ver con la clase de relato de estas semanas… Si alguien encuentra más textos de calidad que comparen relato con novela… Se agradecerán.

  2. #2 by María on 5/Mar/2012

    Con estas cosas y las clases me doy cuenta de la poca “técnica” que tienen los millones de rollos que he escrito. Pero bueno, aquí estamos para aprender. Muchas gracias. Muy interesante.

  3. #3 by María on 14/Mar/2012

    Lo más revelador me ha parecido la comparación del relato breve con la poesía y la música. Es muy gráfico.

  4. #4 by Jose on 30/Sep/2012

    Joder, que denso este texto. Que forma de enroyarse. Me gustaba mucho más Tomás Blanco. Se le entendía mejor. Esto parece el libro de la autoescuela. Parece redactado expresamente para que te cueste entenderlo, para desalentarte y que tengas que hacer un esfuerzo para seguir leyendo.

  5. #5 by Rosa on 29/Abr/2014

    Pues a mí estos artículos me parecen una verdadera joyita literaria. Ya le gustaría a más de un profesor de escritura creativa que se las da de algo en según que cursos explicar así.
    Me encantan!
    Por favor, más!

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