and in the shop…
“Grapes in the Crater”
Indigo Dreams Publishing
Beyond the grey I hear them, large flocks
of geese or cranes, winging over Scamander
fields in flood. They call my name with longing.
My fingers move across wood to a corner of lace –
so she did after all fetch out the best table-cloth.
There are voices round me, snicker of knives and forks,
slurp of wine. I should be smiling fondly at Hector
in disputation over the best way to slice a duck,
at Hélène’s tally for her celebration cake: nutmeg,
ground almonds, red nectar, candied peel.
The young ones come to kiss me, they carry
smells of other places, Paris, Lycia, Thrace.
None of them knows how the sun, stretching
to touch my back, brings me the first spring days
when pails froth with milk, goats leave the valley.
Chairs are scraped back, footsteps die away,
return heavier by brandy and a tarte aux pommes.
The fan of air behind my back is my Achilles’
descending arm, tender as a new moon, though
his fists are fire and his fury burnished iron.