Tourist Guide: How you can know for certain you’re in Zogairysk by Jane Røken

Three Drops from a Cauldron

Tourist Guide: How you can know for certain you’re in Zogairysk

The bridge. The mist. Your hotel:
Electric Dragon Light House.

In the parking lot: an extinct truck
and a hawker’s barrow.

The landlady inspects you,
her tumbleweed eyes swarming,

suspicious because you speak
the language, but reassured

by that other language: dollar, euro.
Local coin is a dirty word.

The stairs and floorboards feel soft.
The night air smells so slow.

On the bedside table: a brand-new
Tarot deck, nothing else.

A thought, surely not your own,
breezes through the window:

You could actually stay here.
No one would ever know.

And all the trees in Brigadoon
turn over in their sleep.

Jane Røken lives in Denmark, on the interface between hedgerows and barley fields. She is fond of old tractors, garden sheds, scarecrows and other stuff that will ripen into something else. Her writings can be seen in many…

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