A helicopter thunders through the sky
its devil noise scaring me
making me look up
where is the danger?
my eyes roaming the sea
where the elegant rippling blue
is the only movement
waves carrying no ship
nor a rubber dinghy.
The beach temporarily not clean
a heap of debris heavily planted in the sand
left by some divers
who instead of proudly waving with a squid
broke through the blue surface
bringing silent leftovers of wreckage
spiky wood, rubber pieces, clothes and all
that a boat once carried
bringing the scent of
scared people, oil and sadness.
My heart still bleeding
hearing the sound of a helicopter
or when my nose picks up
this sad scent that last summer
reigned over Lesvos' coasts.
Then the world rushed over the island
disturbing the quiet rhythm
of just ordinary beating hearts
who – what else could they do -
reached out and helped
from war drowned people
children who did not know
that they had to live their youth
as an adult.
And now that this tearful world
has gone elsewhere
leaving the beaches empty and cleaned
villagers full of traumas
smothered in dreams
hands full of emptiness
because also the people
once recognizing the island
as an oasis of quietness and sunshine
have moved elsewhere.
I walk along the beach
as empty as the bordering blue water
above me unrest in the sky
of a wild flapping bird
what are they doing there
now that the world has left the villagers
and suddenly I am not sure anymore
what pains me more
the quiet beach
or the suffering elsewhere.
(with thanks to Mary Staples)