Today I climb a mountain on this remote Greek Island. Beyond the source of the waterfalls, lizards cling to the cliff faces. I test each hand hold before I give my weight to the mountain. The hard volcanic rock has been broken into sharp and unstable shards by the winter elements. Only the lichen-covered rocks are stable. I pick my path. The sky is racing past. A rush of adrenalin hits me. I consider the possibility that I could die here. Why not? It’s a beautiful place where I am completely at peace.
I see a species of ants that I know well from the Australian bush. We have history. Once I saw them carry away bones from a snake carcass. I’ve stood barefoot on their mounds for a dare. They don’t sting but their meat-eating preference makes this a good test of endurance. Sure, it’s crazy, but I had time and it was the days before I carried a laptop and had 305 Facebook friends. Today I feel only completeness. This is not an Italian drama. Perhaps it’s a Greek tragedy? Except there is no family gathering at my feet. I’m grateful. They need a wash.
It’s Sunday and I’m in the most beautiful city in the world.
Cigarette butts crushed into broken tiles.
At my feet is another death, in the street,
Broken buildings and hollow dreams.
I’m in her arms like a stillborn child.
Feeling nothing, it seems,
Sometimes I just miss people. I want to hold them in my arms and feel their heart beat. I want to look into their souls. Share stories. Linger in all the delicious ways. This isn’t lust. There are many ways to be in the world. Lust has its place. But the kind of desire I speak of is a love so deep that it may only last a second yet find perfection. The willingness to be absolutely present. This is not a contradiction. The longing is a sweetness, something that poetry holds hands with and prose takes a long walk through aimless streets.
It is a delicious moment,
The sun burning deeply,
Her skin starts to fry.
She gathers her senses,
Surrounded by life.
When death beckons shyly,
She submits to his knife.
It’s only a metaphor,
We grow and we die,
And laugh at the Present,
The Goddess on High.
There is nothing to say, she laughs. The door swung on it’s hinges, uncertain whether to open or close. The window, wide-eyed, allowed the light to enter, but only with a certain discretion. Cicadas screamed. Over-ripe figs fell to the ground. The walls bared their souls. And the day passed away.
This heat is driving me wild. I roam the island like a feral goat. Bones cracking like sticks under a cloven foot. But it is the antlers that capture me in this moment of abandon. They are only twigs but I am surely a deer.