March, 2020. Bolivia closes its borders. Paraguay closes its borders. New words are heard: Pandemic, Covid. The cruelest month is April when an everyday miracle occurs. A birth, a baby named “Mila.” “Mila,” a Milagro. In Paraguay the mother is all alone. In Bolivia the father is bereft. The mother’s name is Camila Giangreco Campiz. She is married to Hugo Dellien, the best tennis player in Bolivia (#72 in the world in January, 2020). Dellien writes to daughter: Mi bebe quiero contarte de que estamos pasando un momento difícil, el mundo esta pasando momentos muy difíciles, es por eso que papi no pudo estar el día que viniste al mundo. (My baby, I want to tell you that we are going through a difficult time, the world is going through a difficult time. That is why I could not be there when you were born.) Months will pass. Months will pass, but not years.
In 756 in China, Tu Fu is captured in the city of Chang’an during the An Lushan Rebellion. His wife and family flee north to the city of Fuzhou. He writes a poem they may never see:
From her room in Fuzhou tonight,
all alone she watches the moon.
Far away, I grieve that our children
can’t understand why she thinks of Chang’an.
Fragrant mist in her cloud hair damp,
clear lucence on her jade arms cold—
when will we lean by chamber curtains
and let it light the two of us, our tear stains dried.
Te extraño mucho y quiero que sepas que el amor que te tiene papa es el mas grande del mundo, cambiaste la vida de papa por completo y eso es lo mas hermoso que me paso en la vida. (I love and miss you so much. I want you to know you are the best and most beautful thing that has happened to me in this world. You have completely changed my life.)
Artist Bio: ItchiRAE (Ricardo Acosta) is a popular digital artist from La Paz, Bolivia who specializes in sport graphics. You can check out his fantastical works on tennis players here or on instagram. You can also follow him and his great artwork on twitter and on his facebook page.
Hugo Dellien: His letter to his newborn daughter is taken from his instagram page, which includes a photo of his daughter.