Capri

Manicured ladies in stilettos navigate ancient smooth stoned pathways, corridors assembled during Roman times. Their legs, butt cracks, and cleavage pattern the night, wafts of perfume mingle with the smell of grilled octopus and cigarettes. Some cling to tan wrinkled arms of sugar daddies, men with white chest hairs attached to fortunes drenched in cologne. I never visit the island for Gucci or Fendi, air-conditioned square shops of consumer luxury. The purring cicadas surrounded by sea are my siren song, blue water darkening as it journeys to Tunisia. Pulsating, my calves quiver up and down steps to Villa Jovis where Tiberius reigned supreme, decadently tossing the unwanted off cliffs into the watery chasm of time. The ruins sit unaffected by sun’s sweat dripping from my elbows. I rest in pine tree shadows, imagine when Neruda was here, arranging verse in his head. Away from the glitz, everything is as it was, as it is, ants, jasmine, laughter of the old women who were born in Capri, born by the sea.

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