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Ion Corcos – Three Poems

Honey Bees For Sale

Honey bees for sale on the side of the road,
on a mountain where pines cling to the slopes.
Boxes lay by clumps of thyme, and marjoram.
I have heard that bees are dying, that certain trees
are toxic to them, that the way we look after the land kills
them in droves. The way we look after the land kills
them. Will these bees die, too? Will insects
and hummingbirds take their place? Will flowers
still bloom? On these mountains there are no dead bees,
but I have heard of many dying here in Greece
and in other countries. Bees don’t care for countries,
for language; only sweetness, to give themselves
what they need to continue. We seek sweetness, too,
but at the expense of bees, of ourselves.

First published in The Cardiff Review



A seagull barks on the roof, bends
its snow-cold back like the steep tideline
below. A wing amongst shingle, dead
and lost, a remnant.
Calls for the cull of flocks,
to keep things the way we want them,
to break the sea, the winds
that carry north, to break
the backs of gulls, to seethe
at their stance, the loudness of their screams,
to say that to scavenge
is to steal. And who are we
to say that they steal? Who are we,
to find a fragment of sea,
a lost feather, and not wonder,
not care, if the bird is alive,
if the sea is clean;
to keep wanting to cull, which means,
to kill.

First published in {isacoustic*}


A Stone in My Shoe

I follow the lines of bark on an orange tree,
lines that trace the land, like a river.

Water does not throw itself away; it does not drown.
It moves in the lay, troubles round rocks,

until it finds the middle way.

The orange tree does not fruit all year;
the river bursts from the mountain only when snow melts

or clouds settle on the slopes,
wet the earth.

I push a stone out of my shoe;
an orangutan will die soon.

Moss, roots, fossils, leaves, shells and stones
all belong to the river,

mark the way a mountain has grown old.
Like a scar, or grey hair.

The river sweeps over itself, turns to river
again and again, makes itself a home.

I look for my home while I move,
find it in the cold air, the distant mountain,

an orange tree. I hear the earth creak
under steel, trees speak to one another.

I push a stone out of my shoe;

an iceberg sinks into the winter sea,
only a polar bear afloat in the dark.

Commended in Earlyworks Press Poetry Competition 2018

Ion Corcos has been published in The High Window, Australian Poetry Journal, One, Panoply and other journals. Ion is a nature lover and a supporter of animal rights. He is currently travelling indefinitely with his partner, Lisa. His first pamphlet, A Spoon of Honey (Flutter Press, 2018), is out now. He can be found online at

Born Stirling, Scotland in 1966, Gillian Prew studied Philosophy at the University of Glasgow from 1984 to 1988. She is widely published with poems at The High Window, The Curlew, The Lake, Zoomorphic Magazine, and Ofi Press Magazine, among others.

3 comments on “Ion Corcos – Three Poems

  1. Pingback: Three Poems Republished – Ion Corcos – Ion Corcos

  2. Sad, beautiful poems, Ion. 🙂

  3. Thank you, Lisa.

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