A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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June 2005, vol 1 no 1

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Adelaide B. Shaw, USA


A Night in Naxos

The Kastro: an area of hills, winding streets and alleys in the Bourgas, the old town. It's quiet, especially at night. There is no room for cars or motorbikes. Hardly any tourists about and very few lamp lights . Easy to get lost. Mostly, there is just the moon to light our way, shining down with a bluish, yellow glow. At times, even that is cut off by the curve of the street, a thick bougainvillea vine reaching from one stone wall across to another, or a tunnel cut through the rock.

pushing our shadows
through narrow passages
unfamiliar angles

Often, there is a stirring before or behind us. A whisper of movement or a rattle of metal.

crossing our path
a flicker of lamplight
two cats on the run

The air is warm and still, scented with flowers and cooking odors.

sitting between
shadow and moonlight
a man with a pipe

We meander down toward the Paralea, the esplanade along the water. Tripping on cobblestones and marble steps, uneven in size. We hold onto rough walls, cool to the touch.

Nearly there. Just a few more twists and turns before the Paralea.

a woman's laugh
rises from a street below
never to meet

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