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This report is taken from PN Review 234, Volume 43 Number 4, March - April 2017.

Looking for Lorca Trevor Barnett
I HAVE WALKED DOWN the road on which Lorca was murdered more times than I care to remember. It takes only an hour – what an hour! – to travel from the outskirts of one whitewash-and-myrtle Andalusian village to another, from Víznar to Alfacar, and to take in some of the finest views of the mustardy-gold plains and the foothills to the north-east of Granada lined with pines. Following the eleventh-century irrigation channel – aqueduct, ditch, tunnel; water and shade, shade and water – the road, serpentine and clean of bloodstains made by the sun or the moon, takes a rest at each bend as the traveller listens to the gathering silences of the sierra. Above, the cross that marks the highest peak – and halfway down the road they took him, one on each arm.

The near-silence of a village like Víznar, one of thousands of villages of its kind across Spain, is part of its charm. Only those who have slept a siesta on a balcony giving onto its square can say, I now know what it is to feel bliss. Look up at the Neoclassical facade of the Church of Saint Pilar, and over there to see the Italianate gardens of the palace: fading murals of Don Quixote can be glimpsed through the cracks in those shutters. Lower your lips to the fountain water which even in the August heat maintains the cool taste of earth. Here, in the midsummer, midday sun, try to imagine anything other than the capacity of humankind for ...


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