On the evening of 11/1, the streets were filled with people made up with elegant and frightening skeleton masks. The dead, just as the living, arrive in a variety of disguises.
On Regina, one of the pedestrian streets (you may recall the vertical garden from June), there were contemporary altars. Contemporary altars mean, I think, altars made to non-family members. Of the heaps of them, I had two favorites. Both were not particularly photogenic. The first was a commemoration of the handwritten letter. Definitely dead.
The second depicted a set of more than three dozen life-size (I think) skulls that were melting into the night. The ice picked up the surrounding light in an eerie way, but looking at my photos, this exhibition sort of reminded me of peering into a refrigerator (full of frozen skulls).
There was more than a mile of altars and parades of painted people willing to pose, wanting to share their traditions.
Fue sueño ayer, mañana será tierra
Francisco de Quevedo
“!Fue sueño ayer; mañana será tierra!
!Poco antes, nada; poco después, humo!
!Y destino ambiciones, y presumo
apenas punto al cerco que me cierra!
Breve combate de importuna guerra,
en mi defensa, soy peligro sumo;
y mientras con mis armas me consumo,
menos me hospeda el cuerpo, que me entierra.
Ya no es ayer; mañana no ha llegado;
hoy pasa, y es, y fue, con movimiento
que a la muerte me lleva despeñado.
Azadas son la hora y el momento
que, a jornal de mi pena y mi cuidado,
cavan en mi vivir mi monumento.”