Academic journal article The Hudson Review

Replacements

Academic journal article The Hudson Review

Replacements

Article excerpt

Si deve preferiré

la ruga al liscio.

-Montale

Smooth things-al liscio-like long silk scarves

woven with the sky colors of Venice,

surfaces of mirrors, dough before baking-

to me they're just as nice as la ruga,

wrinkled things-like bark, a cat's rough tongue.

So when thieves stole my backpack on a train,

I replaced lost items-but with opposites.

If the old camera seemed clunky and dull,

the new camera was slim-and bright pink-

though it was empty, no photos of bridges

over canals, no domes, steeples, gondolas.

The new coffee cups were glass, not plastic,

but fitted with rubber coasters, purple and yellow,

able to squat on fine wooden tables.

Mauve and green, with lace along the edges,

the new umbrella wasn't cassock black! …

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