Cabo da Roca, Portugal – Poem, Image & A Reading by V. B. Borjen

Cabo da Roca, Portugal

The end of one continent
is the end of them all.
Europe ends with Carpobrotus edulis,
an invasive species
which steals the ground, the sunlight and the air
from all the other species
— fitting, won’t you say?

Yellow-green, radiant against the white-blue
and the dabs of brown, red and black
— in the end, too, was a word
and the word was — colour.
(Europeans know an awful lot about that.)

‘Sit on a train and go to the end of the world,’
my friend Edina said.
But what does a poet write
and send from this here cape
to his friend or mother?

There is beauty here, even Carpobrotus edulis hurls
a most saturated hue
against the blue of the ocean.
Nature has no part in the blame
for what great waters
some of its species crossed
covering other grounds
stealing the air, stealing
nutrients,
so nature feels no shame.
(Neither the Europeans,
except for an occasional poet
tipping the Rock
of Lisbon.)

V. B. Borjen reads “Cabo da Roco, Portugal”

V. B. Borjen is an author and visual artist currently based in the Czech Republic. His first poetry collection in Bosnian, “Priručnik za levitiranje” (Levitation manual), won the 2012 Mak Dizdar Award for the best first manuscript by a young poet. His work in English and his recent visual art have appeared in AZURE, Hypothetical: A Review of Everything Imaginable, The Esthetic Apostle, Not Your Mother’s Breast Milk, Chaleur Magazine and Honey & Lime. He instagrams as samoniklo and tweets at @Borjen

Banner Image: “Carpobrotus edulis” by Robert Frede Kenter

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