Distances

by Christos Polydorou

I was born
in the waters
of a daughter

estranged.
A daughter
in chains.

Licked by flames :
I was her necessary waterfall
I cooled the ashes

Some gold nuggets
were later discovered :
She kept me

close to her broken heart
(and it never rained in Cyprus
so broken hearts cannot rain

so they take longer to heal their pain)
close to her wooden spoon
and her apron

and raised me as a little boy
because I could not hammer
frogs onto the walls

like my brother and cousins
and other soccer enthusiasts
bound by blood to me

and my contemporary history.
Through the walls
the voices came

from time to time
but they were benign
like old rhymes

except when they were commanding
and full of grace
and tenacity leading

all the dreamers in me,
all the musicians in me
to a brilliantine explosive of

strings and drums and bass
and faces
coming back to life.

As for her…
Her…
She came into a room

and saw my birdcage had been
destroyed from the inside out.
Some feathers.

A catch in the throat.
Out the window.
The sky so open

it took her breath away.
She considered her aged wings.
She glanced once into a now

empty house.
She grinned,
and then smiled genuinely.

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