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Our last Asymptote Podcast for 2016 takes a turn for the mystical as we explore the Tarot and its influence on different corners of fiction and poetry from around the world. In recent times, there have been many new “translations” of the Tarot in updated editions of the mysterious 78-card deck: see, for example, the ingenius “Black Power Tarot” deck by the Canadian Musician King Khan, who found his inspiration after attending readings by Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky! We’ll also delve into Spanish artist Andres Marquinez Casas’s “Macondo Tarot,” a deck crafted with characters from One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, and hear from the creator of the most recent Tarot reimagining, American artist Courtney Alexander who has updated the ancient deck with characters like Grace Jones and Duke Ellington. Stay tuned: you might just have your future unveiled! This is the Asymptote Podcast.
Podcast Editor and Host: Layla Benitez-James
Like all Chileans, Crabby spoke in a singsong way, her voice vibrating in her nose. She laughed at everything, even celebrity deaths, and made cruel jokes. She drank red wine until she collapsed in snores, only to wake up barefoot because someone had stolen her shoes. She ate empanadas and sea urchin tongues in green sauce seasoned with fresh, extra-hot chili. Whenever the cops beat a “political agitator” to death, she turned a blind eye, pretending not to notice. Actually she wasn’t Chilean but Lithuanian.
She landed in Valparaíso when she was two, pulled along by her mother, a fat redhead who spoke only Yiddish, and her father a tall (almost seven-foot), skinny fellow as light on his feet as a bird. His profession was the most pedestrian imaginable: callus remover. Using prayer, he made the calluses on people’s feet fall off. Since his name was Abraham and his wife’s name was Sarah, he dreamed—for too many years—of having a son he could name Isaac, which in Hebrew means, “he laughs.” After anguished efforts, ten months of gestation, anemia, forceps, a cesarean, a strangling umbilical chord, Sarah finally gave birth to a daughter. Abraham stubbornly insisted on naming her Isaac, but very early in life, even before she began to walk, the girl would burst into an angry fit of wailing the instant she heard that persistent “Isaac.” Only a teaspoon of honey would calm her down. READ MORE…