Here and there

By Verónica Sukaczer


Alejo Avila Huidobro


Places and spaces. Lots of different ones or just one big one? It all depends. Do we share them? Or do they separate us? This book talks about cutting across our differences, about being free to come and go, about having no horizons to limit us, about being able to look at one another – you at me, me at you – always. And about looking outside ourselves too: being able to gaze out into the distance – up high, down low, this way, that way – without being told one way or another. But what happens when someone builds a wall between us?

Mun and Sun and the butterflies used to go from Here to There, from There to Here. Mun lived Here and Sun lived There. Back and forth they’d go without any bother at all. There was nothing to stop them. The places are Here and There. But There and Here too. Mun and Sun are different, they don't look at all alike. Butterflies flutter by everywhere. Butterflies are butterflies Here and There.

The butterflies came from Everywhere,
because they didn't understand about Herethere,
they were words that didn’t exist in their language.

Until one day, someone from Here or There decided that . . .

Mun and the folk from Here,
and Sun and the folk from There CAN’T go on
wandering about in Everywhere
as if the world were
so big and belonged to everyone.
Because the folk from There
take the rain from Here.
And those from Here
want the nice dry land
from There.

But Mun and Sun didn’t agree and said that, if the butterflies could go from one side to the other, they could too. Didn’t they have a right to? They thought they did, but…

So some folk from Here
And the folk from There decided to build a wall.

It wasn’t that bad at first. Mun and Sun could jump from one side to the other, come and go, Here and There. Until…
The wall kept growing and they couldn’t jump over it anymore. Not even words could get from one side to the other. So strong was the wall that words shattered when they hit it.

The only ones who looked happy
were some folks from Here and the folk from There.
Because now it was clear as day that
Here was Here and there was There.

There was no Farandwide anymore.
And there were no more butterflies!

Mun and Sun watched them leave. Off flew all the butterflies together to Somewhere. And there they were left, Mun on one side and Sun on the other, but longing so much to go after them…