(Alvaro Cardona Hine, Thirteen Tangos for Stravinsky, 1999)
Floods of memories unleashed tonight after a phone call from dear granddaughter Kira (pictured above with me in 1990). How well we remember her yearly summer visits to Taos when she was growing up. We sat at the kitchen table tonight recalling some of the adventures we had with her as she became our charge for a few weeks every year -- until her fifteenth birthday. How empty the first couple of summers were without her. But our bond holds fast. She's a busy mother, college student, partner, nurse-in-training.... smart, savvy, and beautiful.
Last month, with my visiting friend Mag, we stopped at the (Alvaro) Cardona-Hine Gallery in Truchas on the High Road to Taos. Alvaro wasn't available but we spent time with his artist/writer wife Barbara Macauley and I bought his memoir. It came out in 1999 and is about his arrival with his family in Los Angeles, as a boy from Costa Rica. He's in his mid-80's now and was resting when we arrived so we didn't get to see him this time. I'd wanted to read the book for years, having taken workshops with him, attended social gatherings and readings of his poetry -- but time passes and things get overlooked.
Alvaro's book was cited by Marjorie Agosin as "A vibrant as well as lyrical memoir shaped by an exquisite language and a wise heart."
Yes. It's pure poetry and I highly recommend it.