No one steps on the same philosopher twice

by Christos Polydorou


I too was a philosopher:
I too was from Ephesus:
I too was from the Ionia:
I too was loved by Wisdom:

Like him.
I too languished in my obscurity:
I too wept for the world:
I too was more than what was reflected in my eyes:
I too was wise, worldly, methodical, analytical, poetic, theatrical, brilliant:

But it was him.

We were at the agora.

The sun was bright. It was June.

This was Ancient Greece.

The Mediterranean sea shined two and then tenfold

with divine light.

It was one of those days

where the air was shocking
with possibility.

We were standing in a circle

all the pre-Socratic philosophers
of the Ionia

that echoed the shape
of Asia Minor,

when Heraclitus stepped on me,


I said to him,

No one steps on the same philosopher twice.

Everyone laughed.

I had a name
but history has forgotten it

so I too
must forget it.

Did any of what I just described happen?
How would I know

the difference between what is happening
and what I imagine is happening

as I recall
in my imagination?

Maybe I was just a contemporary
of Heraclitus who was in love

with him.

If he had asked me to take hemlock
for him to prove my love
I would have


Because he asked.