Many people’s words are like disillusioned factory workers, hammering, sawing, sweating and trudging on till the horn marks the end of the day. Many people’s words are tools that try to fit round ideas through the square holes of understanding. Ana Batres’ words are not like most peoples. They are honest, raw and impassioned. They soar. The soul of a poet plays hide-and-seek between them. And that while words aren’t even her main focus, her beautiful prints are. She, in fact, started her letter with apologizing for her poor English. Some people really don’t know the beauty that they’re capable of.
But enough of my words, let’s let her do the talking.
“I was born… and live in a country that has never really lived in peace; we’ve sunk into a culture of violence, cynicism, fear, pain, revenge, segregation and yet we don’t give up. I think it has to be the love that makes us get up every morning and allows us to laugh at every stroke we receive…”
“I’ve always lived with a broken heart, which was not bad at all. I have not lost the ability to dream, to yearn for a better world, a humanity that loves without limits, without borders or without stereotypes… The challenge comes when you open your eyes and you’re still in this world and you realize you have not made any difference… That’s when you have to make a choice: ignore it or get up and do something magnificent, no matter how small that ‘magnificent’ is.”
“I began to offer my drawings in exchange of love letters. So I let it flow, grow and take its own course. I send small drawings and watercolors on “damaged” paper, which otherwise I would have thrown away… It’s like giving a second chance to that paper and myself. I don’t always get the letter in return. Like love, art is not always reciprocated.”
Well Ana Batres, you’ve certainly made our lives here at 200 R ONE more magnificent, both with your words and your art. And here at 200 R ONE we will always try to reciprocate, even if we can’t ever offer you anything quite as beautiful as the honest and fragile words you’ve given us. Welcome to the 200 R ONE community, where we hope you’ll find enough love to start mending your heart.