Wednesday, April 2, 2014

R.I.P. The Teacher - Descanse En Paz, El Maestro



My father Professor Luis Ellicott Yglesias passed away last Sunday, and though I was really hit hard by the loss, and upset that he suffered so as he lay dying in the hospital, I take comfort that he is now finally at rest. He was a teacher and a learner, interested in many subjects, from poetry to music, women to nature, spirituality to storytelling. He will be sorely missed by myself and many other people. His loving and devoted wife, my kind and loyal stepmother Suanne, was always by his side, caring for him and sharing in his interests and desires, although of course she also juggled many of her own interests as well. Today, as I am processing our loss, I wanted to share with my readers a photo of him at his last outing, when he visited my gallery show, Visual Clave. His record collection - and the wonderful, colorful stories he told about enjoying Latin music at one of its most important sources, the island of Cuba (where his father's side of the family was from) - is what got me started on this whole odyssey of the book Cocinando, and the shows Que Viva La Música!, American Sabor, and now Visual Clave. He told me the records in his collection were the only possessions he brought back with him in his suitcase when he left Cuba for good on the eve of the revolution. One thing he passed on to me was a respect for teaching and a love of learning, not only in the classroom, but in everyday life, and it was a pleasure to take all the skills I had learned from him, from research to lecturing, and get a chance to teach the teacher. Dad, I love you and your stories will always be in my heart, like sand stays in your shoes after a visit to the beach.

Mi padre el profesor Luis Ellicott Yglesias falleció el pasado domingo y a pesar de que estuve realmente un duro golpe por la pérdida y malestar que sufrió, ya que estaba muriendo en el hospital, me consuela que en la actualidad él es finalmente en reposo. Fue un maestro y un alumno interesado en muchos temas, de la poesía a la música, las mujeres a la naturaleza, espiritualidad a la cuenta de historias. Le vamos a echar mucho de menos por mí y muchas otras personas. Su amante y esposa fiel  y leal Suanne, mi madrastra, fue siempre a su lado con el cuidado de él y compartiendo en sus intereses y deseos, aunque por su puesto ella tiene muchos de sus propios. Hoy ya que estoy procesando nuestra pérdida que quería compartir con mis lectores una foto de él en su última aventura cuando visitó conmigo mi exhibición de la caráctula del LP latino, Visual clave. Su colección de discos, y a la maravillosa historias que dijo acerca de música latina en uno de sus más importantes fuentes, la isla de Cuba (de donde procede el lado familiar de su padre, Dr. Luis Iglesias y de la Torre) - es lo que me hizo empezar a toda esta odisea del libro Cocinando y los shows de Que viva la música, American sabor, y últimamente, Visual clave. Me dijo que los álbumes de su colección fueron las únicas pertenencias trajo de vuelta con él en la maleta cuando salió de Cuba para fin, en la víspera de la revolución de Fidel Castro. Una cosa que ha pasado para mí fue el respeto a la enseñanza y su amor por el aprendizaje y conociminto, no sólo en el aula o salón de clases, pero en la vida cotidiana también, y fue un placer tener todos los conocimientos que había aprendido de él, de la investigación a sermonear la lectura, y tenga la oportunidad de enseñar el maestro esta vez. Papá "I love you" y sus historias siempre estará en mi corazón, como la arena se queda en los zapatos después de una visita a la playa.


5 comments:

Unknown said...

Dear Pablo,

I am so sorry for your loss. Your Dad was my Spanish and comp lit professor at Brandeis from 1970 to 1972 when I graduated. I'm sure you've heard this from many people, but he was unforgettable - an electrifying and extraordinary teacher - how he made Spanish poetry and literature come alive (from him I learned to love Antonio Machado and Rilke), and kept us spellbound by his stories. My sincere sympathy to you and your family. Sandy Grossman (NJ)

Jose Iglesias said...

Hello Pablo I am so sorry for your loss, Your father was my cousin I never met because of the Cuban diaspora basically really disrupted our traditional family to a great extent. I wish i would have met him quite a Renaissance man!! Seems like he put together the Iglesias love of learning and teaching to a completely different and wonderfull venue. I knew your grandfather well and he was one of the forces that led me to become a physician. Maybe perhaps we can meet someday and smoke a cuban cigar drink expresso and listen to good music and talk god bless Jose Iglesias Jiglesias23@gmail.com

john said...

Hi Pablo... although many months have passed since this sad news, I've only just read it. I'm sorry Luis isn't with us anymore... the world is a lonelier place without him.
Even though more than 25 years have passed since I was among you, my memories of Luis (and all of you) are fresh and happy.
I remember how we spoke at length about jazz and how I was bowled over when he told me about meeting Miles (and Dizzy, I think)... happy stuff.
I hope you guys are well.

Un abrazo fuerte, amigo.

john williamson

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