“Summer Storm in Sicily” by Laura Stortoni-Hager

Laura Stortoni-Hager


After the summer storm
the South wind carried from Africa
the fragrance of a thousand jasmines. In the streets
small pools of water glittered in the sunlight
like jewels in a copper setting. And there I saw
the reflections
of the golden cities of Revelations—
walls inlaid with precious stones ablaze:
ruby and jasper, topaz and agate,
emerald and amethyst.

Sometimes after the storm
there was no moon. The night fell swiftly
on the wide plain. Peacocks cried in the
distant fields, sensing
the loneliness of approaching dusk.

I know that I am still tied to that land
by something stronger than blood—
that land where truth is a dangerous thing.
I shall always be
two people fighting within one skin:
one, the sun worshipper,
the other muted, devoted to the moon,
in the palace of the wind.

from Rattle #20, Winter 2003
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