Elodie Barnes

Elodie Barnes

Elodie Barnes is a poet, reviewer and essayist. She can be found writing in Paris, Spain or the UK (usually mixing up her languages), while her words live online in places such as One Hand Clapping, Sublunary Review, and Lunate. She is guest editor of the Life in Languages series at Lucy Writers’ Platform. Find her online at http://elodierosebarnes.weebly.com and on Twitter @BarnesElodie.

Lexicography of the Mediterranean

I wanted a word
to describe the soaking of a fig
in early morning light – how the skin
becomes translucent, filled with memories
of dusk and the freshness
of sunrise; how when I bite it
the first sweet chills of autumn
flood my tongue; how I can’t distinguish
its soft flesh from lips
after nights of being entwined
with its scent.

There’s no word, she laughed.
Just eat it, but it’s real,
this happiness, which means that
there must be a word somewhere

washed up on the other side
of this sea

and how many other loves have I missed
through not knowing the language
they speak?

Poetry in this post: © Elodie Barnes
Published with the permission of Elodie Barnes