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Fidel Castro, the totalitarian Haiku master

Is Fidel Castro laughing himself silly as he watches readers of his recent Haiku-like commentaries try to make sense of them? Is he sending serious but thinly veiled messages? Or is he just slipping mentally?

In cryptic paragraphs of never more than 65 words, the former Cuban president has written about yoga poses, edible plants, a criticism of Cuba by a Chinese leader who died 15 years ago and a former leader of communist East Germany who died even further back.

Castro’s pronouncements have sparked quizzical looks, jokes about his mental state as he approaches his 86th birthday on Aug. 13 and convoluted efforts by supporters to explain his odd words.

“I respect all religions, though I don’t believe in them. Human beings, from the dumbest to the wisest, search for an explanation for their existence. Science constantly searches for the laws that guide the universe. At this time, it is in an expansion started about 13,700 million years ago,” he wrote in a short missive published Tuesday by government websites.

“Yogis can do things with the human body that escape our imagination. They are there, before our eyes, on images that arrive instantly from enormous distances through Pasage a lo Desconocido,” he noted in a 35-word post earlier Tuesday.

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