On Crete

Walk down the rocky hill to the beach,
    to the sea and fishing boats.
Across the way sprawls Dia, a sparse island.
Beyond, the sea and sky are one
Meeting at a secret place where
    no shadows touch the land.

Women with their young
    sit clustered on fine gold sand.
Alone. A man sits on the rocky hill
    watching the beach, the sea, the island.
A goat shakes its bell and wanders
While a blue-shirted man sits hunched
    by the deserted bath house
Almost everyone has gone.

Two dogs bark and chase another.
Silent people pedal bicycles,
Others climb the path to flat-roofed
    white houses with shutters blue or green.
A three-domed church with pleading bell
Tolls a reminder to remember something.

Alone. I watch and wonder about the scene,
    barking dogs and goats with bells.
The sun offers a final touch of color.
Beneath the blue, a sea garden reflects the light
    as four women stand and pull their skirts.
They slowly leave the beach and climb the rocky hill.