Lola sat down at a tiny table on the sidewalk in front of the bodega and ordered a
glass of flinty rose. It was frying pan hot. That plus the sound of motorbikes whizzing past
wore her out. She had traveled all summer and now, twelve weeks without a
pedicure, waxing or haircut, and with only a couple of drunken one-nighters and a
stupid dragonfly tattooed onto her hip to show for it, she was more than eager to fly
home the next day.
Well, that wasn't really true, Lola thought. She leaned down and
removed a stack of postcards from her backpack. There was that amazing show of Spanish
cubist paintings at the Prado, and the bullfight in Toledo where the matador got roughed
up a bit. Not to mention that flamenco club in Seville, polka-dot dresses
whirling into the night. Maybe, she thought, I'll just write a few postcards before I
go, try to give my friends the flavor of this place. Ooh, can't forget that place down
south with the flamingos...all those sunsets...amazing seafood...the great guy in
the antique fan shop. She began to write:
Wish you could have been with me
last week at the corrada (that's
bullfight to you!)....
As travellers, our senses are ignited by the various sights, sounds and smells
of a new place, an almost-familiar face, or a heart stopping experience that may be
as simple as a fresh piece of sugar cane straight from the field, or as exotic as a
safari in Africa. But it is the poet who distills these impressions and arranges
them in such a way to distinguish these moments in the memory, the way a master
perfumer blends a dozen herbs, flowers and rare essences to evoke a response.
Chris Cantu, Co-editor