Athen’s Children



A sphinx roams the streets, believe it or not;                             shybacked and forborne, refusing to play,                 

scanning our building in silence.                                      


She slinks by graffiti and crosses the greenspace.

In the playground the children make incredible claims, 

with something akin to innocence.                                 


Their mamas and papas hear the rustlings too,

It’s the wind blowing. It’s their imaginations.

The children squeal in delighted coughs                         


as her lithesome tail tumbles them down.

How quiet she is, like some event in the dark,     

later when all our coats are off.


The children hear the rustling of sheets.

It’s only the wind. It’s our imagination.

But it is not 


and there is more--addendum;

when we are alone.

An owl outside the window is crying:


“Who will come see me?

Who, will I talk to? “

Paying the oldest price of all, singing the oldest song.