an image diary

"And if he left off dreaming about you, where do you suppose you'd be? ... You'd be nowhere. Why, you're only a sort of thing in his dream! If that there King was to wake you'd go out -- bang! -- just like a candle!"

"Hush! You'll be waking him, I'm afraid, if you make so much noise."

"Well it's no use your talking about waking him when you're only one of the things in his dream. You know very well you're not real."

Saturday, July 29, 2006

. . . . . .

Casa Libre en la Solana: Jonah the resident kissing cat went straight for Charlie when we settled into chairs on the little enclosed terrace in Casa's entryway before the reading. Simmons brought cheeses, a selection of crackers, lemon tea cookies, honeydew, cantaloupe, pineapple, I don't know what else, and many bottles of wine, and we put these with the guacamole and blue and white tortilla chips on a table nearly overwhelmed by a big soft fern. Wrought iron gates, a potted aloe by the library entrance, lanterns and candles, bricked floor, adobe stucco, red wood doors, and when I looked up, a lattice of palms (saguaro ribs? ocotillo?) over the beams of the roof and the late afternoon light winking through the screen of leaves.


Eduardo brought Charlie and Josh with him (best company I can imagine, these three, on that dull two hours between Phoenix and Tucson) so the five of us ate a meal together across the street before setting up and I couldn't get over their faces and voices. Seeing Simmons and Eduardo again, Charlie for the first time, and meeting Josh (whose book and blog are forthcoming--look for them). Well.

Wonderful, all of them.


Casa's keepers--its founders and directors--my heroes. They've made a gorgeous magical home for writers--an extension of their home--in my favorite part of Tucson, and they're working very hard. Send them support, send them your residency application. Both. But do it.

We toured the suites after the reading. The red kitchen with the great white gas stove and the chairs you upholstered yourselves and the tile-marked concrete floor, I'd cook and write for days in that room alone. Thank you, Ann and Kristen.


It rained that morning, remember? The sun came out and warmed the water in the air and the standing puddles in the streets, and though there was a cool breeze outside, the people fanned themselves in the mugginess. --Cold bottles of blush wine and water wilting the tablecloth with condensation. --The crackers too by the end of the night, Simmons pointed out, wilting. We read over the drone of the window cooler with the help of a mic. The ceiling fan in the library did what it could. Eduardo joked during his reading that he needed only his James Brown cape to complete his impersonation. This is the desert. We are grateful for rain but we're not used to it.


I read between them. What an honor.


"and what is the use of a book...without pictures or conversations?"

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