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It’s All Greek to Me! by John Mole

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Et in Arcadia ego

It was high summer. Strident pink oleanders defied the flinty heat while other mountain flowers were gone and the grass grew golden yellow. You looked for shade not colour, especially in the middle of the day, when sleep was the only escape from heat.

Fig trees look good but their pale, translucent green is reptilian and sinister and the rustle of their leaves is harsh. The broad fingers they hold over the eye of the sun let in stroboscopic spots of light like needles in the retina. Elpida said never to sleep under a fig tree because it gives bad dreams. Never sleep under a cypress either. The spiky dark trees are old and damp and cast little shadow when the sun is high. Their roots spread among the dead and give them shelter, ...

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