by Carl Boon


The journey takes her past 

the faces of the women

in the village making tea.

She thinks to photograph them

to make a book, but they're so many,

and some trail children 

through valleys of flowers 

until rock, until sea, until

the world's run out of wonders. 

In the magnolia's shade

behind the mosque,

three women lean against a wall,

their scarves fallen,

the skin of their feet made tough

by henna and soil.

All morning, they picked raspberries

while their husbands snapped 

watermelon vines, sometimes

failing, sometimes wishing 

the horizon would erupt with rain,

for there's so much dust.

Even the children hold the myth 

it chokes the olive trees, 

brings the olive monster out at night

to range the hills and block

the road out that leads to the city—

the road she’d memorized,

this traveler,

before it splintered 

and confused her.



Carl Boon lives and works in Istanbul, Turkey. Recent or forthcoming poems appear in PositThe Tulane ReviewBadlandsThe Blue Bonnet Review, and many other magazines.