“It’s raining now and they are dancing in the garden. Naked. The light from the house makes the heavy drops of the downpour shine like tiny precious stones among the shadows of the night”.
Blue Girl Beneath the Rain
His parents, Manuel and Marta, teachers “of the kind that no longer exist, who were walking encyclopedias, since nowadays in Cuba any idiot can call himself a professor,” taught him to read at age three. He learned to write at the age of four. His first piece dates back to age six: “10 pages in giant and deformed handwriting that for me at that time was a novel.”
They placed in his hands the Treasure of Youth, the books by Salgari, Verne, Dumas and other authors. “But the book that sparked my desire to write, my favorite, was The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Mark Twain.”
His mother says that at age five she found him sprawled on the floor next to the bookcase with Das Capital between his legs, reading. “It was a reflection of my interest in reading, since even today I don’t understand shit about Das Capital.”
Already at age 12 he attended literary workshops, an institution that has shaped some of the most renowned writers in the country. There he met others who later became his friends “and still are today: Aida Bahr, Maritza Ramírez, José Soler Puig (EPD), Eduardo Heras León, Salvador Redonet (EPD), José Mariano Torralbas, Alberto Garrido, Marcos González, Guillermo Vidal (EPD), Jesús David Curbelo, Ángel Santiesteban, Raúl Antonio Capote, Lorenzo Lunar, Rebeca Murga and Omar Perdomo (who already claims to be my biorgrapher).”
In 1984, in Santiago de Cuba, together with the writers José Mariano Torralbas, Alberto Garrido, Marcos González, José Manuel Poveda and Radhis Curí, he formed the literary group SIX OF THE EIGHTY, which dissolved permanently at the end of the 1990s.
He worked at the Cuban Book Institute for some years, “until I realized that I should dedicate myself to writing, far from all those literary types, all that gossip among writers, all that show business that wasted my time.”
Since then he writes; he only writes. He does not know how nor want to do anything else. It may be that he does it for his wife, Berta, or his sons, José Antonio and Lior, “who bring to my life an almost divine peace.” And he gives thanks to Christ, “my most beautiful discovery,” because it allows him to write the way he writes, “adequately or brilliantly, depending on who looks at it, but with my truths and my dreams.