Today on Valentine’s Day, I Remember Him…

Irina Pino

Valentine’s Day in Havana. Photo: Caridad

HAVANA TIMES — Lovers and friends come together to celebrate February 14th. They get presents ready, there are invitations in the air… but as I’m no longer in love, I don’t even worry, although sometimes I remember a relationship I had with a 17 year old boy when I was 24.

That was a stormy love, but it also showed me the passion you can experience with an innocent person.

The young man was studying painting at the National Art School (ENA). He was very talented, but I don’t want to talk about his creative skills in this article, at least not in this regard, but rather about how he won me over with his love letters, full of spelling mistakes, but passionate and full of life nonetheless.

They were touching words, written from eastern Cuba, where he told me how his love for me was killing him. I loved all of that romanticism; I enjoyed it, as if we were living in centuries past.

When we finally got together, after a friend lent us a room in Old Havana for a few days, there were real lovefests, where he drew and gave me poems, written on the last pages of old books.

One night, when I was floating between sleep and wakefulness, I noticed how he got up naked and went up the spiral staircase which took him directly to the building’s rooftop. I followed him discreetly, and what I saw next was an unexpected surprise: he sat down in the middle of the roof terrace to talk to somebody, maybe a ghost who only he could see.

However, it was the conversation which ended up being the strangest, there were silences, pauses lasting seconds. He asked it what he could do to make our love last forever and for it not to fall in oblivion, in this routine which engulfs our feelings, which inevitably happens. Then he knelt down and kissed an imaginary hand.

I don’t know if he knew I had followed him and was watching what happened from my hiding place – I never told him – I only rememeber that those words tormented my soul.

Maybe he was pretending, or acting so that I would watch him, but, that was the most beautiful feeling I ever had for him. There was nothing ordinary about his request; he was really speaking to an angel. At least, that’s what I believe.

Irina Pino

Irina Pino: I was born in the middle of shortages in those sixties that marked so many patterns in the world. Although I currently live in Miramar, I miss the city center with its cinemas and theaters, and the bohemian atmosphere of Old Havana, where I often go. Writing is the essential thing in my life, be it poetry, fiction or articles, a communion of ideas that identifies me. With my family and my friends, I get my share of happiness.

2 thoughts on “Today on Valentine’s Day, I Remember Him…

  • February 16, 2017 at 1:46 am

    …so unrea beautiful real story…thank you Irina for making my day

  • February 15, 2017 at 7:48 am

    It’s a beautiful memory that can be held forever in the mind. I can only assume this is a bittersweet memory though, as one of you or both would have got hurt at some point.

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