> Welcome to the castle

Welcome to the castle

Par |2019-02-21T04:51:47+00:00 22 juillet 2012|Catégories : Blog|


Stalwart under set­ting sun she waits
in the ancient gate­way
for the tired and hap­py holi­day­ma­kers.

Her hand­some head is til­ted with a smile,
eye­brows rai­sed like the curve of arches
over the cooling thre­shold.

Her bright words car­ry us up the steps.
She is somew­hat short of breath
but rich in laugh­ter and know­ledge.

Tiny black warts
on the upper slopes of her bosom
twinkle as dark as her eyes.

We tramp over huge flag­stones
each with a memo­ry to cover –
memo­ries with stings in their tails.

Come to the stables, the dining-hall.
See the pat­tern of pillars round the cour­tyard,
signi­fying dan­ge­rous, secret know­ledge.

The Knights Templar – you know – once were here
before the monks with their chan­ting
before the lord moved in with his boo­ty :

his bedroom is here
and this stone bench his cour­ting seat
for the lord and lady in their ear­ly days.

Up that cold pas­sa­ge­way in the sha­dows
is the lord’s retrete
for voi­ding his bowels and his memo­ries.

Here is the tun­nel to the dun­geon
– see how art­ful­ly it is dis­gui­sed ?
So he could lis­ten to the screams

of his ene­mies, as he liked to do
while taking his rest
or coun­ting his money…

Why did he do that, you ask?”
She shrugs and as she moves
sweat slow­ly tri­ckles down her neck.

It was a kind of … what do you call it …
sadis­mo – who was it said that…
about man being wolf to man ?

“Look down here : you see the ter­rible pit.
Prisoners drag­ged to this slab
were kni­fed or blud­geo­ned or shot

- ene­mies of the lords
of the Carlists, the repu­bli­cans, the fas­cists –
who burnt the church – who killed the priest –

feel the cold and see the dark
hear the echo of their screams :
fading into the dust.

All top­pled into the pit to die
I do not like
to go down there.

Who can ima­gine such hatred
when cou­sin betrayed cou­sin
and bro­ther killed bro­ther ?

You can unders­tand why
people still won’t talk.
It is too close still …

Who was it said that man is kin to wolf ?
I read it once but can­not recall.”
She swings the hea­vy door to with a smile.


Aragón, Spain