Edward Caruso has been published in A Voz Limpia, Australian Multilingual Writing Project, ‘La Bottega della Poesia’ (La Repubblica, Italy), Burrow, Communion, Meniscus, n-Scribe, Right Now, TEXT, Unusual Work and Well-Known Corners: Poetry on the Move. His second collection of poems, Blue Milonga, was published by Hybrid Publishers in 2019. He has also featured on 3CR’s Spoken Word program.
Genoa, searching for Eugenio Montale,
while walking via Fabrizio de André.
To sit outside the house where Montale was born;
without a plaque commemorating the poet’s birth
I wouldn’t be here.
His name appears in a small piazza close by,
and again in a narrow street
close to the theatre house in the centre.
I could seek out these sites, pass through
avenues and countryside he frequented,
to visualise them each time I read his poems.
Inevitably, Montale’s voice is not mine
and de André’s Genoa can never fit what I find:
a tourist trap whose inflated prices
match the ease with which more tourists arrive.1
If Montale were alive
maybe he’d be living in Florence,
de André composing music in Sardinia,
despite my walking via del Campo,
or standing opposite an entrance
far from the announcement of Montale winning
a Nobel Prize 79 years after his birth.
1 In 2004, when Genoa was declared Europe’s cultural capital.
white pebbles and haze.
honey wine skies,
whispers from across the river.
too tired to clasp anything
but the river flow.
Train ride, mid-morning:
far-from familiar eyes
addicted to the wheels beneath,
hillside towns and mirages speed past
by the periphery of a city
as squalid as the descriptions
of others who’ve seen this modernity
of bitumen and weeds before.
You can never be alone too long.
Momentary fields of rain and fennel.
Shepherds appear with flocks
as they whelp and beat sticks along dirt tracks.
Fishermen by the river’s rusting hulks.
Creepers beyond the sycamores
stretch towards the water’s surface.
Elsewhere, barking and clanging.
At twilight, white skies and charred thickets,
save for the couple
smoking a joint by a dejected pier.
The sun falls to ruin.
Partisan statue, La Villetta Cemetery, Parma2
Flowers in bloom. Wicks aglow.
Afternoon in twilight,
a song of weeping.
2 The statue had been transferred to La Villetta Cemetery
from piazzale Marconi after it was damaged by an explosion
on 9.11.1961, perpetrated by ‘hands stained in sacrilege’.
For other contributions by Edward Caruso, please follow the links below:
Poetry in this post: © Edward Caruso
Published with the permission of Edward Caruso
Photo courtesy of Brendon Bonsack