The origin of the world

A vignette about a Spanish anarchist and worker after the revolution's demise.

Submitted by wojtek on September 20, 2011

The Spanish War had ended only a few years back, and the Cross and the Sword reigned over the ruins of the republic. One of the defeated, an anarchist worker fresh out of jail, was looking for a job. He scoured heaven and earth in vain. There was no work for a Red. Everyone looked daggers at him, shrugged their shoulders and turned their backs. No one would give him a chance, no one listened to him. Wine was his only friend he had left. At night, before the empty dishes, he bore in silence the reproaches of his saintly wife, a women who never missed Mass, while his son, a small boy, recited the catechism to him.

Some time later, Josep Verdura, the son of this accursed worker, told me the story. He told me in Barcelona, when I arrived there in exile. He had been a desperate child who wanted to save his father from external damnation, and the ever atheistic and stubborn fellow wouldn't listen to reason.

"But papa," Josep said to him, weeping. "If God doesn't exist, who made the world?"

"Dummy," said the worker, lowering his head as if to impart a secret. "Dummy. We made the world, we bricklayers."

Pg.16, Eduardo Galeano's 'The Book of Embraces'