A is for Abundance
WHEREVER you look, there is soooo much to see!
Fruit, flowers, butterflies, bees. Seagulls. Swallows and swifts.
A big big sky so blue it baffles the eye.
Olive trees feed their dangling offspring, new oblong olives — sort of light green — they grow bigger every day. They cling to their nurturers.
The old branches bend, weighted in their burgeoning bounty, winter’s harvest savours summer.
Grapes hang in heaving bunches, they swell to meet their potential sweetness.
And the valleys, oh the valleys on Madame’s sea rock walk, they’re dressed in polka dots of purple and pink. The vivid colours sprinkle brightness on a canvas that’s Karoo-like in its sameness: stubbly bushes, rocks.
Here though, there are mountains too, jutting monuments to their earth’s convulsions, an upheaval that shaped the island and gave it its healing waters, its shape.
Exquisite, tender, so delicate are they, so pretty.
They open slowly, something like love. They take a while to reveal their fulsome unique beauty. Patience. Every day they show a bit more.
Their faces wave in the wind, bow and bob. Slowly they lift the veil, curl from closed to open.
There’s a yellow carpet of fallen petals, a trim of goodbye on the side of the road.
Then a sight you didn’t imagine — hundreds of butterflies, hundreds of them on a mound of bush that resembles giant lavender.
The butterfly wings clap, quicken in their delight. They hover on the lilac, suck on the quivering spikes.
They are there for only one day, with the bees their companions humming to make honey.
Even now the cherry truck is in the square and the plums fall to the ground.
Everyone’s popping them into their mouths.
Despoina at Kafene gives you some, and so does one of the old ladies you met last week.
She’s sitting on her wall picking the fruit when she sees you with your packets of seedlings for her. She pops them into your hand, kindly mutters you feel you understand.
You hear so much too!
Cicadas at full throttle, the vendors shouting over their loudspeakers, the horses hooves that sound like soldiers marching on the cobble stones, the sheeps baas and bells, the hurrahs from the square when Greece scores a goal.
You love the laughs and cries of the neighbourhod children, the Greek music that sometimes plays loudly from one of the houses.
Then there’s the silence. It sprinkles quiet on the hot nights. It lulls you, holds you in its arms.
You smell the fresh air, the horse shit, the sheep shit, the dizzying fragrance of blossoms and blooms.
The food spreads it flavours into the air, the aromas drift lazily along the alleys, all the way to your ignorant nose.
You don’t know what’s cooking but you want to know. Sometimes you lick your lips.
Your teeth crunch into the crisp fresh fresh vegetables you buy at the greengrocer; flavours tickle your tongue.
There’s the sand on your feet, yes, you feel that.
But you wonder … who will reach for the abundance, the love bursting in your heart.
Who will touch you.