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In our time we have sashayed by the Arno,

we have loitered on the Ponte Vecchio

in our time – as if Beatrice and Dante

were liberated from their fine romance,

their courtly allegory of love,

their dalliance with Mariolatry.

But even in Florence it rains, cascades

down the Basilica and the Uffizi,

darkening terra-cotta, marble, limestone.

Lovers repair to bars for sambucas

each with three coffee beans – the holy

trinity of health, wealth and happiness –

to be lit then snuffed before imbibing,

like brief votive candles.

© Copyright David Selzer
2 Responses
  • Alan Horne
    January 2, 2022

    There’s something flawless about this, David, which I found really emerged when I read it aloud.

  • Ashen Venema
    January 28, 2022

    Yes, this poem sings. And the rain makes it rich.
    … darkening terra-cotta, marble, limestone … I can see it.

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