PORTUGAL POEMS


BLITZED
 
 
Fruit salad days
air lemon-fresh
earth olive
late spring, Algarve
 
But the north’s bom dia warmth
is luke down here,
the barbarian invasion
has taken its toll
 
Blitzed by Brits
just a sunnier Brighton,
it’s all but chips and butty! 
 
 
Bonney Bombach
2017
 
 
*bom dia- good day/hello


COIMBRA
 
 
Small hours, the Mandego
sleeps shallow in its banks
town folks deep in their beds
 
A lone car sleuths across the bridge,
at last the blasts of horns has ceased,
game over
 
Above, an ancient seat of learning
crowned as much by Rectors
as by Kings
 
From Roman foundations
town splays steeply down,
conquerors and colonies
have left their mark
 
Plaintiff songs of black-cloaked Fadistas
and percussive shimmer of guitars
stir the river to a new day


*Fadistas- exponents of traditional Portuguese Fado music
 
 
Bonney Bombach
2015



COLOUR SPLASH, VISEU
 
 
The day of my seventieth
eager as morning
the quinta orchard calls
 
I dance through cherry
peach and turtle dove;
in farm-house
no leaping lord
but my own true love
sleeping
 
I’m lead by a path
as in a trance,
stray across a painted field
 
Gathered wildflowers
spill  from hands,
a perfumed spray
a colour splash
for loved ones turned to
dust or ash
 
Nestled in a vase of white
their colours sing
throughout the night.
My love, I’ve made a rainbow
 
 
 
*quinta- farm
 
 
Bonney Bombach
2016




GUIMARAES
 

 
Signing conversation
on the balcony above the street,
my hands play the air,
face, eyes, mouth, body
all partnered in this miming.
 
I see the nearby shape of sounds
that float from moving lips
but words of passersby
fall on deaf ears.
 
At night I dream the
unknown dance of poets
who paint the world in words,     
songs of silence.
 
 
Bonney Bombach
2017



TILTED
 
The grab of it
at continent edge
where Atlantic churns
then bruises,
far flung
from reindeer track,
land hewn of flint and sun.
Prince Henry’s  fleet 
billows white to ocean
 
Vasco, whispered prayer
compass in hand,
charts, maps and shakes the world,
his handbook
precious as empire,
trade routes wove of
spice and wine 
 
The grab of it
at continent edge
to trace the Douro to its mouth
camera, not compass, in hand
spring in my step,
where pilgrim river
 slips
        to
           ocean
 
 
Bonney Bombach
2016