I love city ghosts.
Faintly feathering about their shimmering way, slipping through doorways, turning street corners, shuddering in reflections or sometimes so brash as to blink back at you atop the still presence of whatever's in your glass- water, vermouth or wine- warped by a tilt and shattered by a sip, these fleeting, fluttering glimpses of the past.
As I was sitting writing this at a small cafe in Barcelona, they danced around me in the daylight and I was not frightened but dazed and wistful at the sight of such wisps and such whirls- carried away by their smoky lure, following them on the ends of my lashes.
Ghosts keep me company on my lonesome jaunts, from slipping, shadowy sights on corners or streets huffing with hectic puffs; indistinguishable layers of memories, or were they once dreams?
There he goes- speeding past on his bicycle in a brilliant blur, a gleeful determination on his face or shuffling awkwardly, pulling his tired body along for another long day, leaving her behind.
There I am, even myself, wandering aimlessly, looking for something but not sure quite what- my present self whispers a quiet hello but she never hears it. Not once.
And there we all are. My friends and I, on a warm evening, the light of the oak-scented bodega illuminating our transparent, smiling faces with a space to my side, that's always empty when it shouldn't be.
These demi-present spirits are my faded stories in vision.
I read them one more time, smile softly and close the book firmly.