At the airport in Catania I am randomly stopped during the security scan. My hands are swabbed for explosives. I showered after digging into the ground at Mt Etna so there should be no residue on my hands where I held the small lava stones still hot from the last eruption. “Your telephone.” Huh, I just came through the scanner. “What?” I ask. She thinks I ask why? “Your telephone,” she stearnly repeats. My telephone number?” I ask. ( That is the only thing relatable to my telephone that I have on me.). “Your telephone,” the voice grows louder. My daughter intervenes and pulls my old card. Saves me from the young Sicilian security woman as I remember my telephone is on the conveyor belt waiting for me and I forget every telephone number I ever knew.. Lost in translation— who calls the cell phone a telephone anymore?
For a second
what country I’m in
or if I’m even in
or the world of
on a day of shining sun
my own body of experience
regardless of home
sound of English singing
by Francis Ponge, translated by Jane Swanson
The oyster is the size of an average stone yet rougher in appearance and less in color, brilliantly white. It is a world tightly closed.
Yet it can be opened and it must be held in the hollow of a cloth, using a knife and slightly chipped open, you try several times. Curious fingers cut into it, breaks nails, such a crude work. The blows are marks on the door of the shell, white and round, making a kind of halos.
Inside we find a whole world to eat and to drink under a pearly sky with heavens from both above and heavens from below, while forming a pond, and a viscous green bag which ebbs and flows with smell and sight, fringed on the edges with black lace.
Sometimes a very rare formula for pearl is deep in the throat of pearliness, which we immediately adorn ourselves with.