Memoirs of Hydra | Do you remember the pink oleander


Do you remember the pink oleander
And the hot breeze of an afternoon,
A courtyard’s breathless shade and
Jasmine darkening a night with sweet?

Do you remember the cool of the vines
Beneath which we sat and watched,
A bamboo switched in the air and
A turquoise sea crackled and flashed?

How cicadas screeched and rasped
During noon’s white ferocity,
Moonlight made a world abstract
Monochrome with silver candour.

Do you recall the lemon blossom
In the square as we walked home
From the port at night, you and I
On that island without a name?

I put some oleander by your bed
Before you woke one morning,
Furtively I watched you sleeping
Flirting beside a watering stream,
In your mind you were not with me.

Where are the paths and the groves now
And the heated dust on our skin,
And afternoon behind walls when
We lay down in a shuttered room
Wakening to bathe at a cistern?

Kevin McGrath, Eros, Saint Julian Press Poetry, Houston, Texas, 2016, p.28

Memoirs of Hydra | Do you remember the pink oleander