Alicia In Spain

This is the story of my friend Alicia, who was boarding with Margarita in Granada, downhill from the Alhambra, Margarita with the long tooth, held in place by a gold clip which her tongue always finds, sliding it up and down, up and down, the tooth always about to drop from her gums up and down, sliding in rhythm with her tongue, Margarita with the long tooth.

All that summer, while Alicia was taking dance lessons, she lived with Margarita, whose sharp-dressing boyfriend wouldn’t come upstairs when he visited because he couldn’t stand Margarita’s weepy sister, Carmen, who was living there, too, mourning her husband 20 years dead and singing Flamenco laments

 

Unlike Alicia, who was not weepy over her husband far away back home in Oregon, where she’d left him unable to travel, not weepy but defiant, heels rattling the floor, hands clapping above her head, watching Margarita’s long tooth move in cadence.

So the three of them, Alicia, Margarita and Carmen, alone upstairs in the kitchen, women in their 50s without men, they dance and snap castanets, stomp and clap, shriek and twirl while downstairs, the boyfriend cools his heels and the remains of dinner sit, spoiling in the heat.

 

This is the story of Alicia, boarding with Margarita, downhill from the Alhambra, Margarita with the long tooth, held in place by a gold clip which her tongue slides up and down, up and down … dancing and clapping, Margarita, Carmen and Alicia without men, beating the floor with their heels while the remains of dinner spoil in the heat.