Ann Arbor Review
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
is an independent
International Journal & ezine
Copyright (c) 2016
AAR history note: in print 1967 - 1980. Irregular publications 1980 - 2004. As ezine 2004 - present. Most of 47 years all together....
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He sits still,
Bosons and leptons
Eternally conscious stillness
TEA IN GOA
I order coffee
and the boy brings a silver pot.
“May I pour?” he says.
Something weak and pale
streams from the spout.
I add milk
& the color wanes to moonlight.
He returns and I tell him,
“I ordered coffee.”
“You want powder?” he replies.
“No. Thanks. I’ll drink the tea.”
I return to my room and change for the pool.
When I come out a cyclone of bees
swirls out from the base of a tree and upward.
I sidestep them and go looking for the lobby
but find the library instead.
I peruse their books and choose a likely candidate.
When I return the bees are gone.
At the pool
a cat the color of yellow Portuguese houses
perambulating his domain.
He apparently is the proprietor.
The pool is languid.
I rest my head on the edge
& let my feet float weightless.
My mainspring unwinds
and time stops.
A man with a British accent
sits at a table in the shade.
It’s just the two of us until
a pretty French mother brings her young son.
She has refined cheeks and a petite nose.
The boy is naked, but the French don’t mind.
She smiles at me with azure eyes
and even white teeth.
Lounging on a deck chair
glancing at her occasionally.
The afternoon light
reflecting off ripples
in the pool water produces
an aurora borealis effect
on the trees overhead.
Two women come, then two more.
Four men follow.
Suddenly the pool is no longer our own.
No more aurora borealis.
No more French fantasy.
A jumble of foreign syllables
spin around me
but I can’t sort out the country of origin.
One of the women says “Hello,”
but that is the extent of her English.
She looks Israeli.
One of the men has a soccer ball.
The eight newcomers form a circle in the water
men on one half, women on the other.
Tossing the ball,
chasing each other,
finding excuses to duck the guys,
or nudge the girls,
like an adult version of spin-the-bottle.
Soon the separation between opposite sexes
dissolves like suntan lotion in chlorine water.
In no time they are paired off
and repair from the pool, like
they’d known each other a lifetime.
Ahh the magic of Goa.
The waiter brings drinks to the men
and a silver pot with cup and saucer to the Israeli woman.
It makes me think of coffee,
yet I feel certain it is tea,
though we lack the lingua franca to discuss it,
her and I.
A crow lands on her table and
begins sipping her milk.
I point this out to her,
but she doesn’t understand me.
Finally her girlfriend notices
and they laugh.
The tabby returns
sips water from the pool edge
eyeing the strangers.
He doesn’t mind.
He’s seen all this before
and neither approves nor disapproves,
but simply wanders on his intended way.
Strolling to my room,
the gods have strewn
flowers at my feet.
Delicate white blossoms
with pale yellow centers
have fallen over the pathway.
Their mild, milky color
reminds me of morning tea in Goa.
Richard Gartee, Gainesville, Florida
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