Circumstance

She rode like the jockey from Artemision.
…… She stayed with the nameless statues

in the park when twilight fell through the olive trees
………….and their skin shone as though they might

come alive. He had the gold hair of a god
………….or the great Alexander. Yet had it not been

for the shopkeeper, who knew him, would she have
………….joined him at the taverna that afternoon

at the edge of the Plaka, where other
………….tourists had stopped to rest?

Would she have lingered with a stranger,
………….as she would not have in her own country,

and then put her legs astride his motorbike
………….and let him take her to the foreign part

of a foreign city? It seemed unlikely that their future
………….would depend on circumstance when,

looking back, she saw that the day
………….might have been somewhat calculated.

It was possible to carve their life like stone.
………….And tourists would gaze at them and wish their skin

was as eternal, that someone might want to create
………….their likeness so that it would last thousands of years,

and other tourists then would find themselves at the edge
………….of a labyrinth of time.

 

 

 

Donna J. Gelagotis Lee is the author of two award-winning collections, Intersection on Neptune (The Poetry Press of Press Americana, 2019), winner of the Prize Americana for Poetry 2018, and On the Altar of Greece (Gival Press, 2006), winner of the 2005 Gival Press Poetry Award and recipient of a 2007 Eric Hoffer Book Award: Notable for Art Category. Her poetry has appeared in journals internationally, including The Dalhousie Review, Descant, Existere – Journal of Arts and Literature, The Massachusetts Review, and Vallum. Her website is www.donnajgelagotislee.com.

 

 

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