The Call

the call - Jewish quarter in Girona, Spain

Nearly every town in Europe has one
– a Jewish quarter;* strange peoples
gathered and grew into enclaves
staging voluntary exile from environs
then a leprous walling in, then a winkling out
by fear, fire or persecutory decree
short notice, up-sticks banishment

always a dispersal, the call to another continent
dismissed as tribes, twelve of them
some lost, some found but nominal nomads
here one century, gone the next
moving on or melding into the brickwork
like the cement of a Sabbath ritual

Now in these petrified parts of the city**
we piece populations from a few upturned relics
inquisitive visitors peer where inquisitors trod
in pursuit of phantoms up and down careworn stones
along labyrinthine passages from a biblical age

I cannot go again and see such resurrections
cleaned and displayed
as though nothing happened here but a vanishing

© Laura Granby

*The Call (pronounced like pal) or  Jewish Quarter in cities & settlements of Catalonia- from kahal or kehilla, Hebrew for community. See Network of Jewish Quarter in Spain

**This was Girona, Catalonia – In 1492, 200,000 Jews left Spain under The Spanish Expulsion

A plain verse rendition to unite with other poets at Poetry Pantry



In vein, the wayfaring tree
maps out pilgrim paths;
a wandering cuckoo leaves


Joining Chèvrefeuille for the haiku challenge with double entendre of words i.e. vein/vain & leave(s)/leaf

Also taking my leave of London shortly – not a pilgrim route but walking in Spain nevertheless – north-east of last year’s trek:
In the shadow of the Guadarrama 

Too much, too soon

I think you mistook me for a goddess
the minotaur hunt had begun at midnight
downwind I caught a snatch of whiskey
in the husky whisperings of horn and hoof

Meek as live bait in the illicit snare
though you could not decide if goatskin
was just a smoke screen of my creation
to parry a not so insatiable prayer

In the morning one of us was found
but misery was written in the centre
of the maze – reached too soon
and close to the entrance I lost your name

Written for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Wordle #106 – words emboldened and the poem is an inverse of the 9th word Adronitis