The following is an excerpt from Brendan Connolly’s travelogue “entre el óxido”
Early in the morning our taxi is waiting for us and we load our bags in the trunk, todo esto? the driver asks, sí I say sitting in the backseat, al aeropuerto? sí and an empty Madrid waits to wake in the blued dawn as it slides by to the wakingwails of train whistles, clearthrough they drawl as I drink my vending machine coffee and think of breakfast, goodbye goodbye tostada catalán, to the ritual of finding breakfast goodbye goodbye, to the bleached bones of the Sierra Nevadas goodbye, goodbye goodbye, to the rotting oranges under limbsheared trees on the streets and dirt parks of Murcia, the otherside of bridges with reclutas con Alex y Barnsey in the lighttwittered night, goodbye to Gloria and her kitten and the Casa Verde, awhere awhen we once were among peacocks goodbye goodbye, Abuela! oyes me? nos reuniremos bajo la puerta de las cadenas, goodbye asay as away Madrid drops to highway in the dark, goodbye goodbye to the taillights goodbye, to only know quotable Shakespeare for a proper goodbye to the Alhambra with her untouchable walls and the narrow lights and talcumpowder dust of the Albayzín, ahorrarme unas cuentas hermosas? goodbye goodbye, it’s to America! the whistle sings with its screechscream, oye Johnny? will Pablo fight monsters with forks? goodbye goodbye to the church bells in the Realejo, that train that train how the whistle blows goodbye goodbye to the legs in the windows of cafés dressed and ready to goodbye goodbye in the dark, the lightshaped silhouettes whispering of atime aspent awalking for shade in the sight of mountain ranges, dejar Andalucia fue agridulce, goodbye goodbye to the offtune piano keys of Málaga, the roasting almonds and painted river banks, the turning streets and singing about Jonas goodbye as the train whistle blows in the distance, goodbye to the moorish walls in the sun all achorused of city goodbyes goodbyed as by we byed on rail and road sold on the next kilometer marker with the curtains drawn, goodbye goodbye the short serenades of Vivaldi to the whores in the Puerta del Sol dolledup in neon and falling toys, the martyred lostbeat movinglaughter in the twilight or cannedcaught afternoons wandering nowhere for nothing but the light and sound of softtempered imprints keeping the cinders inside orangered and sunriseswelling, the hitthedirt! rush of hunger on the dark walks of ancient alleys for blindgrab chances of well lit places in the hurried harbinger of downtowns, te quiero the whistle longleers in the smoke all beautifulsadness, goodbye goodbye and there it is again in the gaining morning sun, the train whistle goodbye from ravaged lungs of desert air, reaching like a bear sable for the highest strawberries in the fogging morning outside the terminal windows goodbye Spain, Abuela! oye? es mi fuego en los truenos, puedes dejar la luz encendida? goodbye, goodbye goodbye.
Brendan Connolly is the author of seven chapbooks, including the novella ‘…we are by nature children of wrath’ and a collection of flash ficition, ‘…hutning with the hares’. He lives in Salem, Ma.
entre el óxido is available by contacting “firstname.lastname@example.org”