An old man in a suit
gathers wild fennel from the verge.
A wryneck calling.
Glory be to cod for battered things,
for chips as golden-glisten as a suntanned thigh;
for fresh-made doughnuts, croutons, chicken wings.
All things that saute, sizzle, fry,
Her breath is vine leaves, crushed in the hand,
and her sweat is green olives.
Under the plane tree three old men
watch the shadows creep across the square.
His hair is the wing of a swallow
his mouth a pebble wet from the stream.
Sitting in doorways headscarved women
slowly and precisely stitch.
In all the village the only sound
is the rustle of lizards.
Aphorism, shamelessly made into a poem via the addition of line breaks
A poem should be true;
not like an axiom,
but like a bell.