SEASONAL GREETINGS


Door, Marrakech © SCES 2009



GUBBIO, WINTER 1992


Where the tourist buses turned, the Werhmacht

had murdered partisans – La Piazza

di Martiri Quaranti.  The cold from the hill –

old, old rock – rose from the cathedral’s floor

into our very soles. Outside, February seemed mild,

seasoned with wood smoke. We bought a hand thrown,

hand painted jar with an ill fitting lid.


Since then: earthquakes, marriages…



GUILDFORD, SPRING 1998


Beneath the new Dillons in Guildford,

a mediaeval chamber, disclosed

during the refurbishment,

had been preserved.

Some archaeologists claimed

it was built as a synagogue:

others denied it.

Dillons’ MD was a Jew

the local paper informed us.


The peoples of the book misread each other.



THE CAPTAIN TILLY MEMORIAL PARK, QUEENS, SUMMER 2001


The Goose Pond was green with insecticide:

the West Nile mosquito threatened.

Named for the scion of a local family –

mutilated by Filipino freedom fighters

a century before – the Park was playground

for the replacements of the ‘teeming masses’:

Hispanics, Afro-Caribbeans, Asians.


From Memorial Hill, you could see the Twin Towers.



HOOLE, AUTUMN 2009


Two aging lovers, best friends in all the world,

orphaned late in life, walked circuits of the park

for their hearts; smiled at mums pushing buggies, scowled

at druggies near the gate; talked of ghosts and hope –

and jokes: ‘What’s this fly doing?’ ‘Waving, waving!’


Old lovers count their blessings, side by side.

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