I believe it was a calm evening,
when the sky was least expecting it,
the ancient volcano snapped awake
and oozed a country, which hardened, formed
per second per second through the years
to shape the landscape we scambled through
that last summer together, searching
for the dusty chapels underground,
paintings of Christ with the eyes scratched out.
She looked so small beneath them even then.
Her first time abroad, and soo after the earth
reached up and kissed her, full on the mouth.
And now I’m here in this tea-garden
we visited – city of two
continents, they call it – I like that,
the cool water running in between.
I like the honesty of the place,
the way it speaks of uncertainty,
like the first stars twitching at the brim
of the parasol. Even the sea,
which has so much to say to us, can’t
stop its lip from trembling at the shore.