George Mouratidis

Palm Sunday March for Peace 1986


Lit by city sunday afternoon

a dawn-blue balloon

swirled with spraypaint green

tied to its twin, licorice


given away


some kind of omen

pupil of an eye

into a nightmare

bobs in air at the end

of a string in a pudgy

fist — some little body

milk-warm, tender

as the kiss of tearwater on

a fleece windcheater

marching proud with

the crowd in a street

on an earth,



Waking makes no difference:

again this ghost skull face of

ashen clay sunk in floating

hessian shroud, two holes for eyes & wide

perfect circle void of scream-within-

scream for a mouth anguished by

still living     impossible to save     no

chance to touch so — he? — knows

I am here     I see you     I can…

watch as my legs disappear with

light’s last rites     & letting go

melts     burns through my bones

crumbles this granite shadow to sand.


it’s coming down heavy

outside the classroom window,

wet day roster, eating lunch

at our desks, the story

piped in through the school’s PA

of the girl who folded paper cranes

I hear her beat her classmates in a race

then fall dizzy, then get sick, too sick to

be at school, then

as she lay in bed and

folded wing after wing I hear her fall

just short of

beating that rain, that light

that tom-bowler tear

floating down onto

my stale toast sandwich

like a winged bomb

George Mouratidis is the author of the poetry collection, Angel Frankenstein (Soul Bay Press 2018) and translator of Noted Transparencies by Nikos Nomikos (Owl Press 2016).