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By Jadel Andreetto

Treason doth never prosper: what’s the reason?
Why, if it prosper, none dare call it treason.

– Sir John Harington, Epigrams

Open your eyes. Open your fucking eyes.

The eyelids are heavy. They are like a waterfall of stones. They are pebbles, rocks, boulders that weigh on my eye sockets.

I could feel their hands dragging me, their grunts of effort, their sneering, their breath reeking of alcohol. Even they are part of the plan. I couldn’t figure it out immediately. All that talk about the power of treason, about its narrative power, about its ability to transform history into a myth. An unavoidable factor, he told me. A factor from which strength can be obtained, second only to death and to the challenge of the abyss. Here comes the solution. The essential ingredients for building our dream. He said our. Only now I understand his madness. I couldn’t believe he could push himself so far. I dared not to believe it. He has always had a devious look and a shifty smile. I didn’t recognize the signs. I didn’t think they attested to a lurking madness, insidious like that of someone who has decided to sacrifice everything for an ideal.

I’m a fool. I didn’t see the whole picture and now I’m right here, but it’s just my fault, it’s only my fault. I’ve allowed it, I’ve played along. I just didn’t expect an end like this. That poor madman is ready to die, I know, but I couldn’t have foreseen that he would drag me to the end as well. Treason needs two pawns and both are expendable for the chessboard’s glory.

I can’t regain control over my body. They have done a very good job. A jab on the neck. A flash and then darkness. Where did he found these kind killers? Romans, perhaps. What had he promised them? I hear their words as if they were underwater in a boiling ocean. Broken speeches and disconnected phrases.

Suddenly they stop and put me on the ground. I breathe sand. I hear their footsteps walk a few feet away. What are they doing? Open your eyes. Open your fucking eyes.

I have nothing left for him but scorn. Scorn for a friend, my best friend, who betrayed me for glory.

What end did they come up with for me? Will I wake up in an arena full of ravenous beasts? Will they crucify me or will they slit my throat like a dog, here and now?

My ears are ringing. A rancid taste in my mouth. I could catch some scraps of conversation. My killers are talking about money, they talk and laugh. Thirty pieces of silver. A mere pittance. Thirty pieces of silver to rewrite human history… For the treason of treasons. If only I could explain and say that it was just a farce, that we have done it all only to improve our lives. We wanted to play revolution. It shouldn’t

have to end like this. If only we hadn’t set aside our confusion, our doubts. If only his belief hadn’t gnawed away at him until driving him to the Absolute, the Truth, to delirium. I didn’t succeed in stopping him. I played my part until the end, like the simple man I am.

Thirty pieces of silver. I spit on his thirty shitty pieces of silver.

They grab me. My muscles don’t respond, my legs can’t carry me. They stand me up, my back is supported against something hard, maybe wood. Then they lift me up, a gust of wind caresses my shoulder. A little solace.

I hear a jingle jangle, they put something in my tunic. A noose squeezes my neck. Betrayed to betray.

Open your eyes Judas. Open your fucking eyes.


Jadel Andreetto (Italy, 1974), writer and journalist, lives between Italy and Argentina. He is part of a four-person writing collective known as Kai Zen ( that has published several novels and short novels, among which are La Strategia dell’Ariete (Mondadori, 2007, the first ever published copyleft novel for Mondadori), and Delta Blues (Verdenero, 2010, a cover of Conrad’s Heart Of Darkness).  He also writes short novels, reportage and essays on his own. “The Chessboard’s Glory” is a ‘bonsai novel’ written in English and is part of a large work in progress titled Cimiteri (Graveyards).

This video, “9300 KM,” follows a collaborative graffiti wall made by artists Reiz and Defco while 9300 kilometers apart from each other (the former in Paris and the latter in Saint-Denis de la Réunion, an island in the Indian Ocean). Trust us, it’s worth a view! Click the link below.

Director: Reiz | Defco

Framing: Reiz – Zinc | Bodgä | Defco

Editing: Reiz | Defco

Post-production: Defco

© 2012 Colorcircusprod

“Against Enthusiasm,” Jacob Silverman’s article in Slate last week (you can read it here or by clicking the image above), had me thinking about the ways in which online culture affects how we read literature these days. Silverman suggests that it is harder to read negative book reviews these days and most reviews are recommendations rather than critical appraisals. The former in particular might be true, and it is a point that deserves consideration: what should the role of literary criticism be, particularly in the online universe? Should reviewers spend time reviewing books that they genuinely dislike, or does the choice to write a review already represent a type of criticism in the form of curation? Indeed, at Global Graffiti  we generally do not give space to reviews of texts that we dislike; instead we choose to focus space, time, and energy on presenting reviews of and excerpts from works that we hope to bring to our readers’ attention, especially those that are not published by large presses with powerful marketing machines. Silverman’s idea that online venues create an atmosphere of overwhelming “niceness” when it comes to literary criticism, however, seems rather simplistic. While Silverman broaches several interesting points, his overall analysis is flawed in a way brilliantly parsed by the crew over at NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour (check out their podcast here).

Kwets, Barcelona 2012

Guatemalan singer-songwriter Ricardo Arjona has famously speculated about the differences between the North and South of the world, considering the social, economic, and cultural ramifications of a world turned upside down in his song “Si el norte fuera el sur” (“If the North Were the South”). In this seventh issue of Global Graffiti, we are happy to share with you a couple of works that consider the role of North-South divides. The first is “Alvo Lalo,” an excerpt from John Washington’s novel Dustmarch. This piece takes readers on two friends’ journey north as they walk and talk, testing the limits of their solidarity in the liminal space of the Mexican desert, a landscape reminiscent of Beckett or Sartre. The second piece is Giulia Po’s interview with Italian author Maria Paola Colombo, winner of this year’s Flaiano Prize for her novel Il negative dell’amore (The Negative of Love). The author discusses her invocation of the divide between northern and southern Italy as both a concrete social and economic division in the lives of her two protagonists, as well as a metaphor for larger questions of individual identity.

We also have some pieces that consider geographical divides from alternative perspectives. The first of these is Erik Raschke’s “Berneria,” an exploration into the elusive history of the Arctic island of Berneria, where the inhabitants have vanished and left behind only journal entries and fragmentary tales of their life in the utopia colony. The second is Andrea Labinger’s short story “Laundry,” in which significant periods in the chronology and landscape of a woman’s life are recalled through the seemingly mundane task of doing laundry.

In addition, we are happy to feature: two poems by Amy Uyematsu, including a brilliant piece titled “Found Poem: Echoes from Zuccotti Park” which uses utterances from Vanity Fair piece to compose a new vision of the Occupy movement; a review of frequent Global Graffiti contributor Angelina Muñiz-Huberman’s novel, A Mystical Journey, recently published in English translation; Harold Bascom’s “Red Birds” haiku series, featuring the Guyanese artist’s visual and verbal consideration of the effects of modernity on nature; and Carl Anderson’s “Window to the Caribbean, a visually enticing homage to the region’s cultural heritage and diversity.

In this issue, you will also see the artwork of Kwets in a few of the posts, including this one. Hailing from Barcelona, the Spanish graffiti writer, trained in design and illustration, loves to mix wild style with 3D or design concepts.

We hope that you enjoy our summer issue, marking two years of Global Graffiti!

We are also excited to announce an exciting change to our format. Global Graffiti will be shifting to blog format in August 2012. You will still be able to see the same wonderful content, but we will be posting more often and including content such as links. We will still share interviews, book reviews, dispatches, fiction, poetry, and visual art. Featured posts. Solicit contributions. Subjects – varied. Make sure to check in to the site often, or subscribe in order to get updates on new posts.