The White Village

The White Village
Province of Azurduy, Department of Chuquisaca, Bolivia
January 2000

Like a raised hand
emerging from amidst tungsten hills
the church’s bell tower
announces the white village;

it appears in the horizon
crushed between sky and stone
a Shangri-La of quicklime
and cornfields.

Midday approaches
and shadows await upright
grafted invisible onto the walls
and slowly melt
then decant down the street
in rising tide;

dammed behind a manger
time halts its flow
in old Spanish bronze
while twelve chimes softly
the bell falling silent
– exhausted –
before every knell sounded.

Minutes ticking accumulate
drip, and sift,
and time bursts free
and gurgles forward
through cobblestone streets

where a door opens
and a woman steps outside.

About the author

Born in Spain in 1971, Daniel moved overseas in 1997. He's usually involved in do-goodery of different types in places such as the Balkans,…

Read the full bio

Issue 11 · January 2011

Table of contents