We land at Dubrovnik airport
Unfolded wheels scraping tarmac
Rumbling a welcome in the heat.
The pilot’s Manchester accent
Wishes us happy holidays
He sounds too young to fly jet planes.
Fifteen degrees when we took off
Above the Lancashire roof tops
But here the sun burns fiercer
For the destruction that took place
In the war for independence
And for precious lives extinguished.
In the old town the streets are smooth
Stones worn by soldiers’ heavy boots
Causing unexpected hazards
But most things have now been repaired
So tourists are not embarrassed
And can spend their money safely.
We gaze down from fortress like walls
The pleasure boats plying their trade
Give no hint of what occurred here.
Only the endless walking tours
Uncover the true history
That refuses to be disguised.