Voices on the Wind
by John Grey
I hate postcards, especially from Venice;
the basilica of San Marco, ripening in the sun,
the Palazzo Ducale, delicate loggia, rose-colored walls,
Calendario, Giovanni, Lamberto, Bragni,
and canals, always canals, gondolas, light and bobbing,
in their brown and fleshy waters.
Please, no more reminders that I'm where I am,
and you're traversing the continent
in all its arcane, archaic glory.
Paris, I can just about handle.
I have my Colette, my Sartre, my Gide, after all.
But if I can't tour the palace, kneel at the altar,
be blinded by gold at the Pala d'Oro,
then keep your awe to yourself,
conceal the splendor from my disappointed eyes,
my home-bound self
I prefer the bills that proliferate in my mailbox.
How much electricity I used this past month
couldn't care a fig about Titian's "Assumption".
the gilded chapter room of the Scuola Grande di S. Rocco.
The traffic rushing by me
is headed for the mall.
I'm not jealous.
My neighbor’s tinkering with his lawn mower
not patting down the final touches to
"The Rape Of The Sabine Women."
I'm pleased for you,
these discoveries, treasures for the mind,
manna for the soul.
But I just scoured the oven out,
fixed the leaking tap.
Things that needed doing
but don't travel well.