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This poem is taken from PN Review 108, Volume 22 Number 4, March - April 1996.

Four Poems Monica Youn


Night Ferry to Naxos 1
All your carefully-cultivated notions of realism

come to an end here, where the sentimental pink
funnels into the Peloponnese

like a rum and grenadine cocktail
poured down a taut throat. Tourist,

this is how the peace drains into you.
Your fingers uncurl on the deck railings

and over your head, a spiralling umbilical
of ship-smoke loops back to the foul air of Athens,

which only now, behind you, is beginning
to take shape: a huddled, smog-shielded dome.

The flattering breeze picks out your contours
in silverpoint - its insinuations

sweet as fresh-laid sheets, a bed-time story,
...


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