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Do you remember when a few years ago we woke up in a more human Madrid, more poet? Do you remember that you started looking at the ground to see if you were verses down the street? The clandestine poetry took the zebra steps, causing punctures of emotion to break through the stress and speed that usually mark our days.
Those verses that surprised us as we ran from here to there with the first morning coffee still burning in our throat or taking the bus distracted thinking about our things we owe them to the artistic collective Boa Mistura, the same as with the Madrid City Council It has launched Versos al paso, the initiative with which they intend to fill with poetry 1, 100 zebra crossings spread across the 21 districts of the city, multiplying the effect they achieved years ago and this time involving the inhabitants of the city.
And it is that of those 1, 100 verses, 700 will be poetic creations of the people of Madrid who can send them until September 7 through the project website. In order to select those that finally take shape on the asphalt in Madrid, Boa Mistura will create a committee composed of between six and 12 writers, editors, journalists, poets and professionals related to the world of books.
The remaining 400 will be borne by writers, songwriters and artists from different disciplines who will give their creations to the city at the request of the City of Culture and Sports Government Area.
Verses to the step is open to anyone who wishes to participate, regardless of their age or origin. You can send as many phrases or poetic reflections as you wish, as long as they are your own and original authorship; and have between 15 and 80 characters with spaces. The language will not be an impediment: you can choose the one you prefer and, if it is not Spanish, include a translation in the space reserved for it in the submission form.
More than 1, 000 zebra steps will be given to poetry © Madrid City Council
Already in autumn, Boa Mistura will assign the selected verses to each crosswalk and begin writing. The goal is that in November the Madrid asphalt looks a little less black and much friendlier. It will be then, when your name or pseudonym appears next to your verses if they are among those selected.
Verses in step wants us to build the city among all, but a city in which the importance and value that writing and poetic reading have in our lives is remembered; a city where the act of walking, conscious walking, is increasingly present; a city, in short, in which people, pedestrians, recover the urban environment.
And if we stop walking with automatic step and shotguns? What if we walk contemplating what we see and let these verses clothe us?