moonlight echoes through nighttime streets
reverberating off walls of limburger cheese
and the yellow plaster of peeling bandages
over Poseidon blue.
or Time’s shaving nicks?
black cats scuttle
through dead-end alleys
like fading dreams they dissolve into cognac fumes
rain dogs howl and the light peels away
as the evening train mourns its passing with a brassy wail
and a clack of ivory teeth on day-old bread.
the ghost of Durrell wafts through on a telltale scent of wine
possessing those he touches
pulling them into his
with the magic of the grape and the lure of lost inhibitions.
for a while you inhabit the novel
until the reel world intrudes
and pulls you to earth with Icarian finality
plummeting into the day-to-day
with fluttering stomach and limbs of lead
to crashland in mundanity
not with a thud
but with a whimper of remorse.