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Revista Brasileira de Anestesiologia

Print version ISSN 0034-7094On-line version ISSN 1806-907X

Rev. Bras. Anestesiol. vol.54 no.2 Campinas Mar./Apr. 2004 



Manoel Duarte (* 1937 - 2003 †)



In a way, this is my prayer:

I came by the difficult road,
The line that never ends,
The line that strikes the stone,
The word that turns a corner,
Minimal empty line,
A line, a whole life,
Word, Word of mine.

Paulo Leminsk


Figure 1


It is difficult to summarize the life of a warrior as two or three scenes. We have the risk of disparate statements and of breaking solution continuity.

When he got here - say the older - with his tawny skin, grim face, hurried and hoarse speech and still bearing the humblest difficulties, he probably could not imagine that one day he would become a landmark, a reference point, normally made of stone or oblong granite, similar to those placed at the thresholds of the world.

We have met many years later and, in spite of our long-lasting companionship, only the nostalgia of recalling the past gives the exact size of redemption.

All of a sudden, I am facing him giving my first steps. Me, with that astonished manner of a newly graduated student starting to discover the world and he already harvesting at full speed the eagerness to overcome obstacles, which have made him a unique person.

Since then we have always been together. A relationship measured by ups and downs, but always being outspoken by feelings of friendship and admiration.

And it could not be otherwise: the creation of SAERN, of the Discipline of Anesthesiology, of the Cooperative of Anesthesiologists. The implementation of the first Anesthesiology Training Center in the state and of the pioneer AMB Fees Table. The organization of the first Regional Specialty Journeys and of the first Brazilian Congress of Anesthesiology, held in Natal. The option of adopting him as my guru. Several chats with lots of whisky and pomegranate.

The trust of being anesthetized by him, as well as my daughter.

The recall of a highly skilful negotiator who, together with some few, would have sleepless nights discussing. Or by telephone advice, scheming the steps to be followed during several moments of crisis in our association.

He used to say: "this time it is up to you", but when the day broke, there he was pulling the strings.

The expressions friend and warrior derive from we having seen and shared almost everything.

Those who shared his most absolute intimacy have not heard what I heard: "You know what? I am not suffering, I am starting to miss things..."

Because you also die at every moment, of everything: of love, happiness, boredom, sadness and yearning.

Only the Gods will not feel these things because they are immortal.

The poet teaches: there is a little left from everything; there is a little left from an empty cigarette pack; a little of your chin is left in your daughter's chin; in the china saucer, the broken dragon; almost nothing was left from his rough silence.

But the dead do not die. They are like us, selfish, just taking care of their interests and being enchanted, just to remain alive in our minds, affection and love.

Yes, we die, but from a now unlimited, continuous yearning, able of any shape and color.

I would have more to tell, much more because man's days are the days of time. Since that inconceivable first day of time when a terrible God has prefixed days and agonies, to that other day when the ubiquitous river of time will return to its source, which is Eternity, and what is now mine will be erased in the present, the future, the yesterday.

Rest in peace, my good friend!


José Delfino, TSA, M.D.
Rua Prof. Antonio Fagundes, 1849
59054-390 Natal, RN, Brazil

José Delfino, TSA

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