Carys Parry, Wales

I first came to Hydra when I was a student and fell in love with the place and its people. I returned years later in 1988 with a friend who was going through a difficult time in her life. Sadly the depression returned and she committed suicide by throwing herself off a bridge three months later. About that time I bought the I'm Your Man album and one of my favourites was The Tower Of Song. I wrote this poem to thank Cohen for helping me through that time.
Like you I went to Hydra.
Like you I fell in love.
Like you I returned later
To see the magic once more.

The barren rocks and the sparkling blue sea.
The dung of the old donkeys
Steaming in the noon day sun.
The emaciated cats
Sniffing at the token scraps
On the snow white cobbled streets.
The lights by night dancing on the sea
And the clang, clang, clang clanging
Of the halyards on the glistening masts.

My memories came flooding back
Ghosts were around each corner
Beckoning me, calling me.
Ela , agapi mou.

I have this passion for Greece
Which is not my own
But came to me from the past,
From the life I lived before
I could not help myself
From loving this barren land
Nor did I chose to love
That man who broke the language barrier
With the strength of his soul.

My dearest friend came with me.
She loved it, she called it paradise.
I thought it would be her salvation
But alas it was not to be.

She cried when we left Hydra
She cried as much as me
She said she would never forget
The island, the sunshine, the sea.

Little did I know when we left there
How desperate she would be
That three short months later
She would throw herself into the sea.

She lies in her lonely grave now
She lies quietly and at peace
The island gave her happiness
But the hurt now is within me.

I need the tower of song, now
Thatís where I want to belong.
Let me in to the tower of song, Cohen
Let me into the tower of song.

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