Amor secreto

AMOR SECRETO MANUEL PAYNO

Mucho tiempo hacía que Alfredo no me visitaba, hasta que el día menos pensado se presentó en mi cuarto. Su palidez, su largo cabello que caía en desorden sobre sus carrillos hundidos, sus ojos lánguidos y tristes y, por último, los marcados síntomas que le advertía de una grave enfermedad me alarmaron sobremanera, tanto, que no pude evitar el preguntarle la causa delmal, o mejor dicho, el mal que padecía.
—Es una tontería, un capricho, una quimera lo que me ha puesto en este estado; en una palabra, es un amor secreto.
—¿Es posible?
—Es una historia —prosiguió— insignificante para el común de la gente; pero quizá tú la comprenderás; historia, te repito, de esas que dejan huellas tan profundas en la existencia del hombre, que ni el tiempo tiene poder paraborrar.
El tono sentimental, a la vez que solemne y lúgubre de Alfredo, me conmovió al extremo; así es que le rogué me contase esa historia de su amor secreto, y él continuó:
—¿Conociste a Carolina?
—¡Carolina! … ¿Aquella jovencita de rostro expresivo y tierno, de delgada cintura, pie breve?
—La misma.
—Pues en verdad la conocí y me interesó sobremanera… pero…
—A esa joven —prosiguió Alfredo— la amé conel amor tierno y sublime con que se ama a una madre, a un ángel; pero parece que la fatalidad se interpuso en mi camino y no permitió que nunca le revelara esta pasión ardiente, pura y santa, que habría hecho su felicidad y la mía.
“La primera noche que la vi fue en un baile; ligera, aérea y fantástica como las sílfides, con su hermoso y blanco rostro lleno de alegría y de entusiasmo. La amé en elmismo momento, y procuré abrirme paso entre la multitud para llegar cerca de esa mujer celestial, cuya existencia me pareció desde aquel momento que no pertenecía al mundo, sino a una región superior; me acerqué temblando, con la respiración trabajosa, la frente bañada de un sudor frío… ¡Ah!, el amor, el amor verdadero es una enfermedad bien cruel. Decía, pues, que me acerqué y procuré articularalgunas palabras, y yo no sé lo que dije; pero el caso es que ella con una afabilidad indefinible me invitó que me sentase a su lado; lo hice, y abriendo sus pequeños labios pronunció algunas palabras indiferentes sobre el calor, el viento, etcétera; pero a mí me pareció su voz musical, y esas palabras insignificantes sonaron de una manera tan mágica a mis oídos que aún las escucho en estemomento. Si esa mujer en aquel acto me hubiera dicho: Yo te amo, Alfredo; si hubiera tomado mi mano helada entre sus pequeños dedos de alabastro y me la hubiera estrechado; si me hubiera sido permitido depositar un beso en su blanca frente… ¡Oh!, habría llorado de gratitud, me habría vuelto loco, me habría muerto tal vez de placer.
“A poco momento un elegante invitó a bailar a Carolina. El cruel,arrebató de mi lado a mi querida, a mi tesoro, a mi ángel. El resto de la noche Carolina bailó, platicó con sus amigas, sonrió con los libertinos pisaverdes; y para mí, que la adoraba, no tuvo ya ni una sonrisa, ni una mirada ni una palabra. Me retiré cabizbajo, celoso, maldiciendo el baile. Cuando llegué a mi casa me arrojé en mi lecho y me puse a llorar de rabia.
“A la mañana siguiente, lo primero quehice fue indagar dónde vivía Carolina; pero mis pesquisas por algún tiempo fueron inútiles. Una noche la vi en el teatro, hermosa y engalanada como siempre, con su sonrisa de ángel en los labios, con sus ojos negros y brillantes de alegría. Carolina se rió unas veces con las gracias de los actores, y se enterneció otras con las escenas patéticas; en los entreactos paseaba su vista por todo el patioy palcos, examinaba las casacas de moda, las relumbrantes cadenas y fistoles de los elegantes, saludaba graciosamente con su abanico a sus conocidas, sonreía, platicaba… y para mí, nada… ni una sola vez dirigió la vista por donde estaba mi luneta, a pesar de que mis ojos ardientes y empapados en lágrimas seguían sus más insignificantes movimientos. También esa noche fue de insomnio, de…

222 thoughts on “Amor secreto

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