Basque (Older version of ‘Monoglot’)

I inhabit a dull mountain, beneath me
dim figures,
distant on an innate horizon
shudder their breath.

Down in the valley people are looming,
their voices
and the wind’s pale muttering correspond –
merging together.

Cannot the mountain zephyr understand
my syllables?
Pale grasses and trees nod to the sky.

The colloquial shepherd ignores my salutation,
articulating a fine guttural monologue
He bars the pass, pointing homeward
with his forked crook.

Obeying instantly, I descend winding paths,
sulphurous mists asphyxiate my passage.
Glancing upwards,
I see there is no return.

Beyond mists,
A dark abeyance –
impenetratable and silent astrides anvil skies.
my shrieking vernacular
echoes back over sullen waters.

I have crossed bridges –
dark and lecherous.
And the voice I hear is the sea,
a nebulous discord.