In Netanya, above the cliff
by Elisha Porat
In Netanya, above the cliff, on one
of those sweet Friday afternoons, I
sit on a stone that marks the border
between the garden, the promenade
and the street. A warm sun ploughs
furrows that shiver across my back,
echoing the foam above the waves below,
of a wintry sea that retains the chill.
The town around me already
slowly removes the bandages
from terrorist attacks that hurt, grinding down
without mercy. Suddenly I am pounced upon
by this vision I have had before: my whole being
beholds the grim advance, the realization
of day-to-day Zionism.
The first German tourists run up and down
the paths, and the entrance to the gallery throngs
with holidaymakers: the town is coming round;
on warm Friday afternoons; at the end
of spring, two thousand and four.
As before, I am cast aside. Your turn
has not yet come. Someone else
will pledge his heart on your behalf.
With the grim advance, the realization
of day-to-day Zionism, the salt of my
life, and the single breath of spirit
from the fibers closing slowly
around my aging heart.
Translated from the Hebrew by Eddie Levenston
© All Rights Reserved 2004
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