Yota Krili/Γιώτα Κριλή, A pelican/Ο πελεκάνος


A Pelican

A pelican
stood imperious
at the entrance of the shop
moving slightly on his webbed feet
his long neck turning.
His beady yellow ringed eyes
viewing eagerly
the fish display.
He nodded sagely his huge pink beak
unperturbed by the presence of humans.

The shop owner scoffed
shooing him away.
Hey! go and fish your own, lazy birdl
Yet the pelican stood his ground
and I fancied
that he had arrived at the fish market
on a different agenda
and not just for leftovers.

Surely he had come
to claim his own share of the catch
to register his protest
for the plundering of the seas
that leave his pouch empty.

He could have even been the pelican of the wilderness!*

Yiota Krili

*Psalm 102:6, the Bible

Ο πελεκάνος

Ο πελεκάνος
στεκόταν αγέρωχος
στην είσοδο του μαγαζιού
κινούμενος ελαφρά στα μεμβράνινα πόδια του
στριφογυρίζοντας το μακρύ του, το λαιμό.
Τα μάτια του, τα στρογγυλά, τα κίτρινο-δακτυλιδένια
επιθεωρούσαν ανυπόμονα
τη βιτρίνα.
Κουνούσε συνετά το πελώριο ροζ ράμφος του
ατάραχος από την παρουσία των ανθρώπων.

Ο μαγαζάτορας χλεύασε διώχνοντάς τον
Ε, τεμπέλη! πήγαινε να ψαρέψεις τα δικά σου!
Όμως ο πελεκάνος δεν υποχώρησε
και φαντάστηκα
ότι είχε έρθει στην ψαραγορά
με άλλη ατζέντα
και όχι για τ’ αποφάγια.

Σίγουρα θα είχε έρθει
να διεκδικήσει το δικό του μερίδιο
να καταθέσει διαμαρτυρία
για τη λεηλασία των θαλασσών
που αφήνει άδειο
το μεμβράνινο σάκο του.

Θα μπορούσε να ήταν ο πελεκάνος της ερήμου.

*Yota Krili was born in Kerastari, Arcadia, Greece, in 1937 and migrated to Australia in 1959. Completed high school studies at East Sydney Evening College and graduated from the University of Sydney with an Arts degree and a Diploma in Education. Her poetry has been published in various anthologies, journals and newspapers. Her book Triptych: Poems, was published in 2003 (by Owl Publishing, Melbourne) and her translation into Greek of the novel Women of the Sun was published in 2008 (by University Studio Press, Thessaloniki).

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