The sacred ministry of botany

[No es de los mejores párrafos, pero Auster ha sido capaz de resumir la musicalidad y riqueza del lenguaje botánico, que todavía me sorprende por su fidelidad al detalle y su precisión]

In themselves the plants weren't much to look at, but their names had an impressive music, and after I had studied the pictures and read the words that accompanied them (Leaf blade ovate to lanceolate in outline...Achenes are flattened, ribbed and rugose, with pappus of capilary bristles), I took a brief pause to write down some of those names in my notebook- I started on a free verso [...]. The words had a chewy Saxon thickness to them, and I took pleasure in sounding them out to myself, in feeling their stolid, clanging resonance on my tongue. As I look at the list now, it strikes me as near gibberish, a random collection of syllabes from a dead language [...].

Bur chervil. Spreading dogbane. Labriform milkweed. Skeletonleaf bursage. Common sagewort. Nodding beggarsticks. Plumeless thistle. Squarerrose knapweed. Hairy fleabane. Bristly hawksbeard. Curlycup gumweed. Spotted catsear. Tansy ragwort. Riddell groundsel. Blessed milkthistle. Poverty sumpweed. Spineless horsebrush. Spiny cocklebur. Western sticktight. Smallseed falseflax. Flixwood tansymustard. Dyer's woad. Clasping pepperweed. Bladder campion. Nettleleaf goosefoot. Dodder. Prostrate spurge. Twogrooved milkvetch. Everlasting peavine. Silky crazyweed. Toad rush. Henbit. Purple deadnettle. Spurred anoda. Panicle willowweed. Velvety gauda. Ripgut brome. Mexican sprangletop. Fall panicum. Rattail fescue. Shappoint fluvellin. Dalmatian toadflax. Bilobed speedwell. Sacred datura.

[Paul Auster 2003 The Book of Illusions. London: Faber and Faber. Pg. 295]

[Las fotos (de dos matas sin identificar) están tomadas en las ruinas de un monasterio, en Cáceres]

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