Colexiata do Sar

Colexiata do Sar


Half past two in the afternoon: metal shutters

slamming down. Shade this side of the street.

A greased-back black-haired guy—smoker’s cough—

goes by. Cars, then silence of a side-street

on Saturday afternoon. Flap of a pigeon’s wing.

A dark-eyed girl in purple slippers with her boyfriend.

This suburb, almost countryside. In the shade of the Romanesque

church: wedding rice. A white terrier barking at me.


The Romanesque church of the Colexiata do Sar, or the "Collegiate Church of Santa María a Real do Sar" is located to the south of Santiago's new town, to the south east of the railway station, just beyond the inner ring road, the Avenida de Lugo. In 1993-94, the area had that delightful feel of where the city abruptly ends and countryside begins. The Saturday I happened upon it, all was quiet, apart from a friendly terrier.


[From my book, Santiago Sketches (Salmon Poetry, Ireland, 2017).]