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Archive for August, 2011

18. Eire (Ireland)

And in County Cork, the craic is good and the bowls are flung with underarm abandon along the crooked backroads.
Betting is fierce as spectators leap asunder from the cannoning bullets.
And in the distance, the hulking shadow of St Kevin’s (‘longest building in Europe!’), built to encase the insane.

jpm

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17. Iceland (near the Vatnajokull Glacier)

When the world was just begun,
the earth shifting and heaving, steaming and bubbling,
untrodden and newborn.

Verdant Green.

Vast and sweeping landscapes.
Still to be known, but with tomorrow’s breath.

Cerulean Blue.

Unsung, yet already heroic.
And utterly solitary.

Glacial White.

This, then, is the first saga of Iceland.

jpm

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16. The Philippines (Manila)

Call it research.
Sex workers learning how to protect themselves from HIV.
A client calls – I’m hurriedly bundled in amidst the girls.
He hesitates on his slow inspection, eyeing me speculatively.
‘Not this one’ says the brothel owner.
Cool as anything.
Not me: I’m all sweaty relief and bug eyes!

jpm

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15. Italy (Rome)

Preternaturally quiet, dust motes suspended in a shaft of cool, subterranean sunlight, deep below the roasting scooter-filled streets.

Ancient bones, crumbling to naught, stacked high in Catacomb walls

A femur here, a grinning jawbone there.  A crooked finger, beckoning forwards into the once-living story of a Roman past.

jpm (posted from Cairo Montenotte, Italy)

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14. USA

A cruel wind whipping papers and dust from the night before against my legs.
Old lady shuffling past.
A yell!
Fit young man sprints ahead, her handbag clutched under his arm.
Seconds later, a NYC mounted trooper gallops past on his mighty stead,
giving chase.
Surreal…..

Only in New York.

jpm (posted from Toirano, Italy)

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