Friday, September 15, 2006

On the slopes of Etna

Sulphurous air,
like lead in the lungs.

Ragged sheep skitter,
kicking down

a crackle of small stones,
haloed in black dust.

The shepherd’s stained finger
tests the blade of the wind.

No need to rush now,
nowhere to go.

He lifts a bottle from his bag,
tilts the head back, ready.

One green gymnast gyrates
on a basalt stage,

then, as a shadow falls,
the lizard takes fright,

pirouettes away
into a hiss of steam.

Two figures lean,
indicating beyond the snow,

where the jagged skies
observe them quizzically.

Down in the village,
three in the afternoon, the crusty waiter

snorts in his sleep,
dreaming of hot flesh.

K recently went on a Ramblers' holiday in Sicily and this is K with the guide, just above the snow line. You see, I don't just do misery!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful... Nice pic. I loved the Barricade (1968) pic, too.