Clouds were not travelling on the sky, and the leaves of the trees were not moving in the olive grove that covered the whole mountain, on the east side of Lesvos island.
The night of the Resurrection was coming calm and clean. Vasilis Varkas is the only soul tonight on the mountain.
He cleaned the small yard, then he washed his hands and his face. When this was done as well, he went and she sat under an old tree.
He lifted his eyes slowly, he turned them around to the east and to the west, then he let them touch the horizon, towards the sea that was not moving.
He came in the island from his fatherland, the Anatolia, when they happened the persecutions of the christians, in 1922.
From his own people, his family, there is no one remaining alive. One boy, that he had, the war took it. He got lost in Anatolia.
His days now on the mountain with the olive trees are quiet, always the same, one day from the other.
During winter, when it rains, he doesn't ever leave his hut. He burns dry logs in the fireplace and stares many hours at the fire as it becomes slowly ashes.
When it gets better the weather he is used to go down to the river that flows to the sea. He listens to the roar the waters make and remembers the life that he lived, the big forests and the rivers of Anatolia.
Thus one day the end will come. He says now that it will be soon. They will bury him in the small yard.
There he has dug the soil and has planted a cypress that grows day after day. There he says he will find peace, when it will come the end.
Old Vasilis calculates that down there, in the village, the people must have gone to the church. It is very quiet.
Suddenly the old man thinks he is listening a light noise, like steps of a man who approaches. He took distance from his thoughts and fixed his eyes in the night.
- Why did you come up here? The road is long. - I came through the pathway. I thought that tonight also you 'll be all alone.
Most of the days in his life he passed as field guard, guarding the lands in these mountains. He knows the land step by step.
When it took place the interchange of the turkish populations of Greece with the christians of Anatolia, the Greeks kept Akif in order for him to show them the lands that the Turks were abandoning.
Everyone was cursing him when he was passing by, and they used to spit the soil that he stepped upon, in order to demonstrate how much their hate was for his race.
The children were following him from behind and they were teasing him shouting: - The snake Akif! The snake! The snake!
This story about the snake of Akif was like a myth that they were saying the christians of the land.
The story was saying that when Akif was young, while trying one day to unclog a tube that was leaking water, he saw coming out from inside the tube a huge beast with black scales and big eyes like those of the ox.
They came face to face, the snake and Akif, but the Turk managed to hit it with a shovel before it came out the whole of it from the tube.
The snake launched against him and, with the strength that remained in it, all frothing, it fighted to put him down.
He was talking nonsense, and in his dreams he was seeing every night the black scales and the eyes of the snake stalking him.
But from the previous Akif there was nothing left but a poor frightened animal who feared its own shadow.
By seeing also the older ones cursing on him, they were running behind him shouting: - The snake Akif! The snake! The snake!
Who would help Akif now? Who would fear him? Where would he find protection? He is alone and desolate.
How nice would it be if they would let him go as well to the foreign land, on the other side, at Anatolia, where the others fled from his nation.
This would be the only happiness, the last one, that he could expect from life. They didn't allow to him the people, this happiness either.
When he saw some christian whom from his appearance he would guessed him to be a man of good will, he would fall to his knees, over the soil, and would beg him:
- Help me, and Allah is great and he shall pay it back to you. Help me go where they went my own people.
He will go to the strait of Çanakkale and of course he will find the tomb of his brother. There he will find rest, on the same soil, with him.
These things he was saying, and the tears were running from his innocent eyes, and were tangling on his white beard.
Thus little by little he made the decision that his destiny was to die alone and desolate in his birth land.
On the other side the christians also little by little they got used to him, they stopped molesting Akif and to spit on the ground that he had stepped.
In fact, over time they went even further: they started to understand him and to feel compassion for him.
The joy is a sharp tone which extends like a neuron in the air, a rare tone within the generic symphony - it provokes the humans like a conceited voice.
With the sadness it's another thing - so much they are accustomed the humans to listen to the symphony of the sadness and to feel it.
Day by day the christians of the land, poor people of the earth and of the sea, and the christian refugees who came from the east they started to approach the misfortune of Akif, to understand it.
They were getting together, they were talking about their troubles one to the other, and they were all weeping for their fate.
Once Akif made an mistake calculating the dates and he fasted two times for the ramadan. When this was known no christian thought of laughing.
A christian said: - His prophet has forgotten Akif. What matters if also Akif forgot what was the right moon in order to worship him? The prophets forgot of the humans.
On the mountain of Lesvos, which is full of olive trees, tonight, during the clean night of the Resurrection, the two men - the christian Vasilis Varkas and Akif the Turk - desolated they have come together, they are sitting one next to the other and they don't speak.
One after the other they start to come the things that they have lived, to pass through their minds and to disappear.
In a gorge of Anatolia there is a hut. At an hour like this, on a night like this, they would knock on the door.
One would notify the other, the shepherds, in all the huts, that the time had come to come down for the Resurrection.
They would descend all together to the nearest village, and if it were a very dark night they would illuminate the path with lit torches that they were holding in their hands.
Still in those times there was no war, and within the hut of Vasilis Varkas there was a child with hard black hair and face in the color of the wheat seed.
He sees them on the path of the gorge, on the light of the lit torches. One moment. One moment more.
There is no more gorge, there is no hut, - neither from the child's face remains anything that exists. Everything is desolate.
- What was our blame?... - What was our blame?... mumbles in low voice the old man from Anatolia, and the tears soak his face. What was their blame?
There alongside, in another old heart, another child's face tries to remain for one moment, the same way that the lighting passes and then disappears.
He had no more than twenty years when he left and disappeared for ever from his life. Just when facial hair was growing on his face.
And the tears are ever running from their eyes, a protest profound and sacred like that of the children who don't understand why they embittered them.
- Look down, said Akif. Down, on the plain where the village is, there appear now many small lights. They must be the christians who came out for the Resurrection.
Old Vasilis kneels down on the ground, he makes a penance, he kisses the ground, and then he remains like that praying.
Akif stares in the middle of the night the dark volume of his friend who tries to find the peace by talking with his God. One moment. One more moment.
And Akif, for not being alone, little by little, without thinking he kneels too and he begins to pray, in the night of the Resurrection, to his own God (ecumenism).
For quite some time on this mountain with the olive trees there is nothing more than this silent conversation with the two distant Gods who turned their faces away (blasphemy) from the humans.
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