Alone, I go to Sounion
for one last Greek ruin on the mainland,
Poseidon looking west. One more day
scratched on the cell wall of my mind,
like Byron carving his name on a column’s base.
My tiny, locked window of time,
how it slows on the promontory,
and, after the ferry, in back streets of an island
with whitewash and fish.
With chicken and with women,
you use your hands, they say here.
Ironic that I could be told such a joke,
with my history
inscribed in my red-rimmed eyes.
I try the path up to a white and shining
monastery, but take a wrong turn
near the top, and reach only a fence,
behind it, a large barking dog,
as if I’ve been led to ponder what it means—
that view I can’t see, that breath I can’t catch.