#TourismThrowback. My poem Algarve Cliffs has just been published in the journal Creative Flight.
I wrote it many years ago during a walk on some cliffs in the Algarve, just as the title says.
When I say ‘wrote’ I mean it formed in my head as the walk progressed and I put it down on paper later.

Algarve Cliffs

High where the earth has been roasting
red dust covers my shoes, fills the crevices
between the curved top of my plimsolls
and my ankles in their white socks.
It’s a guided walk and what I absorb
are the warnings given at each step,
the leader’s constant exhortations:

Don’t broil too long in the sun
lest you pucker up dehydrated
hat, water
don’t walk too close to the edge
lest you meet your fate
in the rocks that are lodged in wait
under the sparkling water

This precipice is prone to crumbling;
admire the jaggedness, stay on the path
walk single file, especially right at the top
hat, water
don’t slide don’t slip, don’t venture
to the brink, lest you collapse
with the escarpment into the brine.

In the past just a glimpse of the sea could please my heart.

What if the guide sees my secret in my eyes?
He’ll admonish:
Don’t dance under the noon sun.
It scorches.
You could shatter the earth
which in this spot is fragile.
Your dancing could scare the sea.

And here’s the link to the issue of Creative Flight Volume 2, Issue 1, April 2021.