by Judith Strasser

Last Night at the Scottish Retreat

September 28, 2001

No matter that you are leaving
a castle without a moat,
dodgy beef,
sulphurous broccoli,
people still strange
after four weeks
of sharing the loo--
you don’t want to go.

The world has turned
wicked, and though
you were always at risk
in Scotland the mist
obscures the dust
and you think
you are probably safe
so long as you go
no further than Edinburgh.

Home means stories
your friends will tell,
echoes of terror,
and how you won’t
want to admit
thank god there was no TV.

Published in The Ledge, Spring-Summer 2005