Serenissima’s Embrace


The beauty is not the madness

—Ezra Pound


It’s the pigeonstheir fervent fluttering

their love sick crooningwho charm you into this

Venetian trance


A black boat glides through gray green water

Every stone bridgehas its lovely

her naked shouldersher boyfriend in straw hat

She holds her selfie stick just soGazes at herself(and him)

with Facebook eyes


Our Lady of Serenity leads you onturns you round

loses youconfuses youshifts scenery when you’re not looking

Alleys ensnare youfeed you to other alleys

Map can’t find youiPhone tracks you to the middle of the lagoon


Our Lady was stolen from Byzantium


Our Lady was a great queenBought and sold nations

Now she has nothing better to do than to trick

your compassmake a fool of your smartphonethen spit you out

into the blinding babble of the hordereeling with spinners and ginormous purses

while sun does its glitter thingon the Grand Canaland the shrouded

the scaffolded Basilicaraises its many headson the Piazza San Marco


His body was stolen from Alexandria


We are hereWe have always been hereWe will always be here

Oblivious to what the old man on the stone bench foresees


As it wasso it will be

Falling towersRising seas


If only you could rise above the tangleon the wings of that lion

above the twisting footpaths and waterwayswell-versed in air currents

in tidesin the lost book of magicIf only you could swoop through millennia


round the backside of wonderdowndowninto the dream

of the lagoonYou’d hear Byzantium singingin hushed gold


Through a high archNoah maneuvers his ark


Spirit stirs the waters

The ones who lost it alltheir homestheir towers

The ones who learned to fishin marshlandswhile seas rose

figured out howto pierce the sea floorwith a bristling forest of logs

It is they who created the glowingwater veined bodyof Our Lady


No one knows what fate is hidden in the lion’s mouth

or when your time will cometo do the bone dance

with old Ezra P


It’s the pigeonstheir fervent fluttering

their love sick crooningwho spirit you away

O Venetian

Siren Song

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