The Cursing Stones

Ariana, adopted the old Greek ways,

when Nikos died diving for sponges.

She encased her curses into two lead stones:

smuggling one into his coffin,

dropping the other into Naxos deepest well.

She made sure Nikos soul would

carry her curse to the underworld

before it ascended to heaven,

or activated fully on the river of forgetfulness

for Death to see, read, feel her grief.

She had hired the local poet who still

remembered all the magical phrases

and could reverse the flow of words.

She wanted Death

to throw himself to the crows,

split like she was divided inside,

perish the same way Nikos drowned,

damned Death’s eyes to drunkenness

till he became a burden to the earth,

a useless sack of spoiled wine.

As she turned back and

started to look away

she heard Nikos voice echo to her.

She turned around  and  In

the mist that crawled away to the Aegean

was revealed three Cretan hounds snarling

behind the gate of the rich shipbuilder’s house.

The sea, the earth the sky collapsed in her.

The sound of tides, the swirling dust, the rain were

mocking this girl who knew only ordinary curses,

this widow doomed to live a long, grieving life

listening for Nikos sounds until her very end.

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