Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.
Muchos años después, frente al pelotón de fusilamiento, el coronel Aureliano Buendía había de recorder aquella tarde remota en que su padre lo llevó a conocer el hielo.
This is the unforgettable opening line of Gabriel García Márquez literary masterpiece Cien años de soledad— One Hundred Years of Solitude. In the book’s final pages there is a revelation about the order of man’s time and space: The first of the line is tied to a tree and the last is being eaten by the ants. El primero de la estirpe está amarrado en un árbol y al último se lo están comiendo las hormigas. These lines linger in memory for years, decades after the book itself is closed.
The Colombian writer died in Mexico City on April 17, at the age of 87. His intoxicating language, his expansive viewpoint and entrancing imagination remain with us. Long live Gabriel García Márquez.