Monday, January 2, 2012
this generous post, the opening lines of Small Damages, due out from Philomel on July 19th.
The streets of Seville are the size of sidewalks, and there are alleys leaking off from the streets. In the back of the cab, where I sit by myself, I watch the past rushing by. I roll the smeary window down, stick out my arm. I run one finger against the crumble-down of walls. Touch them for you: Hello, Seville.At the Hotel de Plaza de Santa Isabel, the old lady in the vestibule is half my height, not even. She has thick elephant legs and opaque stockings, and maybe the sun banged her awake when I opened the door, or maybe the look of me disturbs her, but whatever it is, she’s bothered. She puts her hand out for my deposit, finds a key, and knocks it down on the table between us. She thrusts her chin sky high, and I turn and take the marble stairs, where there are so many smashed-in footsteps before mine. Smashed in and empty and hollow.