Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Not long ago, I was searching for something that had me looking through the website of my almost alma mater - Thomas More College (NH). While there, I stumbled across several issues of Communitas, the official magazine/newsletter, from my tenure at the college. During my semester in Rome I worked on a series of poems as part of my coursework, presenting them for critiques each week to the writing professor. Toward the end of the project, the professor (who also happened to be in charge of producing Communitas at that time) asked me to select two poems to appear in the next issue. Technically, the appearance of my work in Communitas was the first appearance of my work in print. As is befitting for a student's poetry, these pieces are a little too high-minded for their own good, but are, in their own way, rather experimental. I was still feeling out for the pacing of lines, trying to find what felt right in my mind's mouth. It took about two years for another piece to find a home on paper.
La Piazza

A fountain, rendered useless by the rain,
Gave its meek contribution to the street.
Potable water lost its clarity
As it ran off into the dingy-brown
Floodtide of the Easter Janiculum.
The city became more Venice than Rome—
The silting dynamic of renewal.
A wall-fountain by San Cosimato,
With a modern mosaic backsplash,
Dove into the walkway beneath the playplace.
Fresh rainwater mixed with the recycled
Waterfall that runs continuously.
Save a few cars and a starving student,
The entire piazza was empty.
The rain stopped a short while later.
The clouds threatened, keeping us all at bay,
Not wanting us to see the rebirthing
Of cobblestone, tessera, and asphalt.
Even the still-life that human hands made
Became re-lightened by the clouded sky.

La Strada

Accordion wafts its dulcet melodies through the streets,
And into eddies
Formed by brick walls
Trapping the late afternoon air tightly.
And in the drafts
Distance is lost
As laden strollers spend the sun crossing from nap
to nap
With not a care except their mother’s lingering
Mixing with the foreign sounds.
Buskers spend their time pumping and extracting
city air.
From time to time
They halt the wind
With the serpentine flow of their unabashed
Which carry with them a lifetime’s worth of
dripping sounds.

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