...or Italy



In the front pews of the Basilica

we sit sketching scenes of what is to come.

We are silent and we know

there is something to this place.


In the bus we pass Lake Trasimeno. 

It is America in here, and cold. 

Now, soon into Assissi.  St. Francis the Italian.

The art, again, Giotto.  The history immense.


Out there turf screams to be pushed down

by audacity, allow the arch, heel, toe of our solitudes

to crush its immortality. We want its mineral crust

to adulterate our arms, feel our skin broken by the world.


Looking out, we fill in shadows,

pale dimensions from a bus. I want to push

my arm through the glass and let

Italian rain fall on my American hand.


It seems I will stop breathing—

or maybe have. I rise to gape at olive trees

and am told we cannot stop. 

Basilica di San Lorenzo from the inside is immaculate.





Basilica di San Lorenzo

 Blind stone slats lacking filament and ore,

AD 300 

and something, another Medici commission

gone bad, and wasn’t this the one for

Great Lorenzo?


Ipods stuffed into slouched bodies,

we overhear them

comfort us in our hour, hear us, o Lord;

the walking

tours pass by, a reverant hush,

and we obliquely follow.


Tinny earbud now a dangling white hiccup,

look up and see, page 95 in the humanities book,

rendered  by the Lippis,

each pius Donatello, irrelevant.



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