Coffee and leather armchairs, candlelit, Card-playing in corners, glassware, jumping flames In open fire places. Drinks to hand we sit Watching the beards and spectacles at games.

Mount Carmel wine. The candlelight Is gold and silver points on polished glasses. Wall ornaments, china, tableware The keepers of the passes.

Comfort. Mozart somewhere. A warm room In a pleasant club-land scene. The candle flame jumps before the faces Of the card-players dressed in green.

A click of cards, a murmuring of voices, A certain heightened feeling in this place. Cold wind outside. Here, well warmed and tended We watch each player’s face.

A snowy wind from hills of stone and mud. We chatter with liqueurs, lingering thereon. The candles flicker to the distant thud Of guns in Lebanon.

No ambiguities, no ounce of doubt In this Now at least, this moment pinned, Gold and silver bubbles, thin bands of steel With candles in the wind.

Articles by Hal Colebatch

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