This poem is taken from Stand 228, 18(4) December 2020 - February 2021.

Eliana Elia Four Swift Tales
Translated by John Xiros Cooper and the author


I don’t know how far he went. I don’t know if once in a while he still thinks about me. Perhaps he has started another life; has a new home with neat white curtains. Perhaps all around there is a large garden where scented faces bloom to be caressed. I don’t know if he has forgotten his past, erased the names, collected in a vase his severed dreams. I don’t know if he can still hear the birds singing. I don’t know if he’s cold, if he’s hot, if he’s thirsty, if he’s hungry. Perhaps, he’s still dead.


They were opposite each other. He stared at her without touching her, without even talking to her. He observed her pallor and felt startled and beset by an uncanny shudder. He approached and, taking her in his hands, let her slide to the ground. He stood there looking down at her, lying there, naked, white, with no signs. Giving in to an irresistible impulse, he took the brush, dipped it in carmine red and, impetuously, shook it over her. The canvas, motionless, abandoned herself to the drips of colour.
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