Magical Realism, Writing, Fiction, Politics, Haiku, Books

sábado, agosto 26, 2006

Avoiding Ernesto

When Katrina left and then finally Wilma left too, I slammed the door, called the locksmith, and changed the locks. I muttered after them, shook my head. Putas. Bitches. Done me wrong. Good riddance. Don't let the door hit you on your way out. And don't ever, ever come back. Then the silence, not the eye of the storm, but how it sounds when all the electricity is out and the streets are flooded. The loudest sounds are swimming insects in the sink. A forest of concrete is now porous like swiss cheese and as weak. The windows are gone. Everything in the freezer will thaw and stink and ooze. And there will be rivers of fetid garbage, sewage, and drowned animals in the bright sunshine.

I don't think Ernesto, above, is a reincarnation of Wilma. Or Katrina. Or any of my other famous home wreckers. I pray I'm right. In the meanwhile, there is the waiting to find out. And while there is waiting, the hot, wet breeze blows off the Caribbean. I smell the heavy, wet wind, trying to detect her, to sniff out her intention, her direction. Her perfume, once so familiar, is barely detectable. And I have no idea whether this time she is smiling or furious, benevolent or destructive. There's little to do but wait and see.

So, two waiting, waiting for hurricanes to go away book recommendations. Both have a Cuban connection. Why not? When it comes to the hurricanes, the wonder island has the most experience:

*Pedro Juan Gutierrez Dirty Havana Trilogy: A Novel In Stories . Pedro Juan is some kind of Cuban Bukowski, and this book, banned in Cuba, is as hot and humid as any.

*Oscar Hijuelos The Mambo Kings Play Songs Of Love: A Novel. Hijuelos' birthday was last week. And this book, set in the Cuban emigre community of the 50's Bronx, is a steamy, yet poignant tale.