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Thursday, 10 June 2010



File:2008-12-19 Lanzarote ElGolfo.jpg

Above the black rocks of the mystic isle of Lanzarote
The grackles crack their throats of bone in the smooth air

File:2008-12-19 Lanzarote Timanfaya.jpg

Amid red distances across the little visited isle of Lanzarote
Dry hills hold cupped palms toward the nearest clouds

File:2008-12-15 Lanzarote  SalinasDeJanubio.jpg

From water of sailors' tears black blooms rise
To create grey shipwreck skies
Above ancient Lanzarote

File:2008-12-15 Lanzarote Wreck.jpg

Blind crabs crawl bright sands once walked by buccaneers and kings
While camels gaze impassive upon cacti
And small bats in remote caverns hang in wakeful sleep
Over desolate Lanzarote

File:Hacha grande from papagayo pano.jpg

Crater and Laguna of El Golfo, Lanzarote: photo by Gernot Keller, 2008
Timanfaya National Park, Lanzarote: photo by Gernot Keller, 2008
Salinas del Janubio, Lanzarote: photo by Gernot Keller, 2008
Wreck close to Arrezife, Lanzarote: photo by Gernot Keller, 2008
Hacha Grande, to the south of the island, viewed across the arid plain of El Rubicón from the road to Punta del Papagayo, Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain
: photo by Yummifruitbat, 2006


Curtis Roberts said...

This poem and the images of Lanzarote are stirring, mysterious and a perfect antidote to everything I woke up feeling today. Until you reach the last line ("over desolate Lanzarote"), I think the island would probably wish to adopt and embrace the poem for tourism purposes. I want to visit the little visited isle of Lanzarote.

TC said...


I join you in this wish in my imagination.

phaneronoemikon said...

there's a new almodovar movie which has some nice shots of L. as well,
but you really should see the native costume. bright red and green and yellow felt. The locals look like medieval jesters. or this is what i recall. Isn't there also an ancient sheep-herding language still extant somewhere in the canaries too?



Thanks for yet another travel to somewhere heretofore unknown -- no oil balls washing up on those beaches one hopes. . . .


pink edge of grey cloud in pale blue sky
above ridge, motionless greens of leaves
in foreground, sound of waves in channel

by definition, neither a bit
more or less of measure

means, perspective identical,
same continuous surface

grey-white cloud against invisible ridge,
line of cormorants flapping toward point

TC said...


Lagoon, channels, waves -- you've filled in our mental picture of Lanzarote quite nicely.


An extensive search has yielded a dearth of Lanzarote jesters in caps and bells but a magnum share of low end Euro tourism.

It seems there is a dangerous runway approach, terrible winds. The tourism sites don't mention this. But Youtube has some hairy landing videos which have been watched by hundreds of thousands, no doubt anxious Eurotrash worrying about whether to refund their tickets.

And as to the musical offerings, about the best I could find was this singing Yorkie on Lanzarote who actually does a passable Bono.

But I don't know that I would want to risk one of those landings for a singing Yorkie. Least they could do is dress the tyke up in cap and bells.

Oh, well. The compound desolation of Lanzarote is giving me a migraine. I think I'll eat a peanut butter sandwich and shut up.

TC said...

Nothing like dried out Chunky for a migraine... hit the nail on the head with a hatchet.

Still no Lanzarotian natives in jester outfits, though. They must all be hiding in the deep bat caves beneath Vimeo.

But hoping not to disappoint I did turn up this interesting bit from Down Under on the foolscap watermark.

Almost makes one wish to return to the epoch of being foolish on paper.

TC said...

And by the way, re. that wreck off Arecife in the photo, this part of the world is

famous for shipwrecks

...and with good reason...

as we have repeatedly seen.

leigh tuplin said...

I like this when reading from the bottom up too - to end 'in the smooth air'.

And I love the top photo. Eyes on a beautiful black beach with no hint of shame.

Jules said...

I enjoyed your poem and the shots from Lanzarote but was left feeling sad with the last line "Over desolate Lanzarote".

The island has some beautiful white and golden sandy beaches, stunning blue skies and green fertile valleys which are not reflected here.

The planes do normally land from sea, over the beach which makes for some dramatic filming but not dangerous.

Lanzarote is beautiful and needs to be explored outside of the tourist resorts whilst absorbing the influence of César Manrique.

~otto~ said...


"The grackles crack their throats of bone"

"Dry hills hold cupped palms"

"black blooms rise"

"Blind crabs crawl bright sands once walked by buccaneers"

TC said...


About that beach, a click will bring up the surf. Clean as a whistle.

About backwards reading, I can't help doing that sometimes too, as for example here. (That piece connects backwardness with nocturnalism, but the brilliant Binturong and Honey Badger pictured there appear to know back from front quite well, thanks very much).


Thanks very much for representing, and please forgive my levity from a distance. Lanzarote looks absolutely beautiful to me and I can imagine no better place to spend the rest of my days. If only.


And it's even true about the buccaneers and kings.