domingo, fevereiro 18, 2007


«Just climbing out of the train car was difficult—there was no room for me to place my foot on the platform. An old woman next to me was digging some rice out of the folds of her sari. She poured it into a little bowl and started to look around, perhaps for water, perhaps for fire, so that she could boil the rice. I noticed several children near her, eying the bowl. Staring—motionless, wordless. The children did not throw themselves on the rice; the rice was the property of the old woman, and these children had been inculcated with something more powerful than hunger.

A man was pushing his way through the huddled multitudes. He jostled the old woman, the bowl dropped from her hands, and the rice scattered onto the platform, into the mud, amid the garbage. In that split second, the children threw themselves down, diving between the legs of those still standing, digging around in the muck, trying to find the grains of rice. The old woman stood there empty-handed; another man shoved her. The old woman, the children, the train station, everything—soaked through by the unending torrents of a tropical downpour. And I, too, stood dripping wet, afraid to take a step; and, anyway, I didn’t know where to go.»

Ryszard Kapuscinski, 1932-2007