The SouthernCross Review

A multicultural review of literature and social and spiritual themes

Una revista multicultural de literatura y temas sociales y espirituales

Number 1, September-October 1999



Tango (Español)

Tango (English)
Luisa Valenzuela

The Girl in the Floppy Hat

La chica del sombrero con volado
Frank Thomas Smith

He venido a destrozar tu mundo

I've Come to Shatter your World
Belén Wedeltoft


Jardines Lejanos
Juan Ramón Jiménez

Renascence Edna St.Vincent Millay


And There Was Light Jacques Lusseyran Reviewed by Steve Talbott


Naturaleza y estudio de la astrología Juan Antonio Revilla


Favela Children--A Brazilian Diary
Ute Craemer (serialization)


Putting Soul into Science
Michael Friedjung


Knock on Wood from the Barcelona Review


Authors' Guidelines

Welcome to the inaugural issue of The SouthernCross Review. Being newborn, we can't very well talk about previous accomplishments. But we have plenty of good intentions and we'd like to describe some of them for you.

In the fiction category we are privileged to have a short story by Luisa Valenzuela, one of Latin America's leading authors. Her story, Tango, combines the true spirit (and sensuality) of Argentina's national dance with the heroine's emotional response to it -- as only an Argentine writer (and, we assume, Tango dancer) could do. It appears in the original Spanish with English translation.
Belén Wedeltoft, also Argentine, is an up and coming writer whose intensely personal story is sure to move you.

We have a nostalgia and a love for the classics, so don't be surprised to see, in the poetry section, such names as Juan Ramón Jiménez,a Nobel prize winner who most of our English speaking readers probably never heard of, and Edna St. Vincent Millay, most likely unknown to the Spanish speakers. These classic authors are dead, yes, but not forgotten, at least not here. It is no secret that education is deficient, to a greater or lesser degree the world over. This, coupled with the flood of passive entertainment (cinema, TV, video games) has resulted in societies that either don't read at all or only read trash. If a member of this battered generation should happen to stumble upon The SouthernCross Review, he or she will have the opportunity to read at least one of the great writers in every issue. Then there are those readers who have known the great ones, but have long since ceased to revisit them. This, then, is for them as well. This by no means implies that we will neglect new, contemporary writers. In fact, they will constitute the bulk of every issue's content. They will be facing tough competition though, so we mean to select only the best.

The Book Review section presents a book which describes the heroic life of a so-called disabled person who, despite lacking sight, became a leader of the French resistance and, later, a university professor. In life he was an inspiration to many, and his inspiration lives on in this autobiographical work.

A serious essay by a professional psychologist-astrologer, Juan Antonio Revilla of Costa Rica, will interest not only those open to what astrology can mean, but also to those who consider it bunk -- which doesn't mean that they have to agree.

Social themes are also mentioned in the heading. These are the burning issues of our times and we want to talk about them. If in a country like Argentina, for example, 40 percent of the population lives under the poverty line and 80 percent of those are children, we think something should be done about it. And in Brazil the situation is even worse. To learn more about this, be sure to read Ute Craemer's factual, heart-warming book, Favela Children which, because of its length, is being serialized.

And who isn't at least curious about the spiritual nature of humankind and the universe? We are, and we think that you are too. Dr. Michael Friedjung, astropysicist and Research Director of the French National Center of Scientific Research (CNRS) in Paris, has written a rare book indeed, one in which he explores the possibility of "putting soul into science". It appears for the first time anywhere here. The manuscript came in at the last minute, so to speak, so there was only time and space to print the preface in this issue. The subsequent chapters will begin appearing in the next issue.

Not all of the contributions appear in both languages. As you can well imagine, finding competent "volunteer" translators isn't easy. We hope to do better in this respect in the future.

About the name SouthernCross Review

Easy to explain: We are physically located in the Traslasierra valley at 1,000 meters altitude, surrounded by the high sierras of Córdoba in the Republic of Argentina, under the constellation Southern Cross (Cruz del Sur). That's the one that always points to the South Pole. From this vantage point The SouthernCross Review spreads its light to the world.

Click on down through the table of contents, enjoy, and let us know what you think. Or, better still, subscribe, free of course. Just send an e-mail with the word "subscribe" in the subject box and we will be able to inform you when each new issue is one the web. See you next time in November, still Springtime under the Southern Cross.

Frank Thomas Smith, Editor