DINNER AT ARCHANES, CRETE
BY THEA IBERALL
Small plates of Spanakopita are brought to our table
under stucco walls covered with muted hangings
of bull jumpers too faint to see.
We scientists eat dinner, exchange words
describing the life cycle of microbes.
Outside it is raining.
The thunder echoes and echoes.
We trust where we live in our cities
protected by oakwood and knowledge,
after all, these bright flashes are only
a potential difference created
between the earth and the sky.
how the lightning
once surged around me
devoured like each child gulped down by Kronos
these gods, these shakers
of mountains and heavens bolts charged
by the racked eye of a bull
and muffled smoke
creeping like spinach
leaves through walls defacing a family's memories
as molecules trembled and
burst into fire around me
til the house that we trusted
where we lived in our city
but we scientists eat dinner
exchange words describing the life cycle of microbes.
Tiny animals that were then and are now.
Things that digest the past, spit back the ruins
of those Minoans, those Greeks,
our lives in pieces too small to see.
Outside, it has stopped raining.
We drive to the top of the plains and get out of the car.
Leaves that hung green in the daylight
have fallen to the ground.
The slopes of Mt. Jouctas are barely
visible against the circling year.
The thunder whispers,
the stars blare.
Looking at this hyaline sea
as lightning explodes up the sky
suddenly I understand why
Zeus was born here
on this island