Ralph La Rosa

Ralph La Rosa

Ralph La Rosa’s verse has appeared online and in print publications, among others: Aethlon, Amsterdam Quarterly, Asses of Parnassus, Autumn Sky Poetry, The Chimaera, Dappled Things, The Ekphrastic Review, First Things, The Flea, Folly, 14 by 14, Italian Americana, Light Quarterly, The Lyric, The New Verse News, Pivot, Raintown Review, The Raven Chronicles, Snakeskin, Soundzine, TryWatts.com, The Umbrella, Voices in Italian Americana, Yale Anglers’ Journal, and in the chapbook Sonnet Stanzas and full-length Ghost Trees.

The following poems originally appeared in Italian Americana and are included in Ralph La Rosa’s book: Ghost Trees.

Double Take

My camera’s on the seven feet
of Aphrodite.* From Sicily,
this goddess wears a placid face
above the clinging chiton that
tempestuously churns about her—
a bold display of power, focused
on her rising arm. My little
girl stands dwarfed before this force.
Demure and tentative, she poses,
purses lips to hide her braces,
imitates the stance behind her
as she takes a step toward me.
My zoom lens magnifies this prize:
her wave, archaic smile and eyes.

*Repatriated to Sicily, March 2011

Teen Passeggiata

On sultry village nights, teens stroll
in silence, sway with subtlety,
their rhythms smooth and sensual,
this festa da ballo on the square
a stately courtship ritual.

In cities adolescents pace
to hot CDs and chirping phones,
and even ancient Napoli
hosts lively Fiat promenades
on Via Spaccanapoli—

like US kids who cruise the aves
in Chevy coupes, on Harley hogs,
and pause to honk, exchange hellos
or pick-up lines—while radios
articulate uncertainties.

Poetry in this post: © Ralph La Rosa
Published with the permission of Ralph La Rosa