Passing Through

In the morning early he walked down
the mountainside from the old village.
The narrow donkey track, winding serpentine
and stony across the slope of the land,
kept the glitter of the sea below dark cliffs
always in his eyes. He breathed in thyme
and the scent of fresh-cut grass where men
with scythes, who nodded quiet greetings
as he passed, had cleared the path while
he was still asleep and were resting then
in the dusty shade of ancient olive trees.
The spirit of the place hung in the air
like bee-filled midday heat and welcomed him,
a visiting stranger from another world.

Ken Head