Mud banks have cracked into little pools of spit, urine and detergent.
Shimmering still waters where horses admire their own reflection
are fed from village women buckets giving a false impression of modernity
like Ariel, the magic powder that washes away all the sins.
Its end of March and the marshes are wetter than last year but today I do not care, it’s
the Orthodox Easter and all the twigs from the wines will go on fire.
Our vineyard is of a hybrid sort, like a bastard son of two insignificant varieties…what
kind of person drinks a bastard wine? The hybrid vines trail the hybrid country, the
place divided by the creak full of mud and hope, it’s where mosquitos play one ants’ nest
against another and in deep dug cellars last year’s chillies tickle whiskers’ cats.
And so today, the bonfire made of vineyard twigs lits the corner of the world that does
not belong anywhere – who cares if it’s Romania or Moldova, the flames caught on the
camera paint devilish faces full with limbs and bodies perfectly formed. Was it not for
the blue crosses shining down on us from the moon lit graveyard we would be scared.
The village woman said, on the other side of the marsh there’s a ‘stina’, the devil’s
own sheepfold where snake’s head rises from the grass into the charmer’s tune . It’s
where you disappeared on our walk and returned with a bottle of fresh
water. ‘From the spring up on the hill’, you said. Now I am not so certain was it up or
down in the ditch?
The sun has seeped into the horizon, leaving purple sheen above the stina now bare of
me and you but that horse with a plated tail. The sheep bleating
behind me leaves the shepherds shouting the words I do not understand.