Academic journal article Parnassus : Poetry in Review

Val Veddasca

Academic journal article Parnassus : Poetry in Review

Val Veddasca

Article excerpt

L'occhio del padrone ingrassa l'orto

Adolfo's bought a village in the hills,

a ghost village, all schist and stinging nettles

and fallen hand-hewn beams of forest chestnut

hauled up on men's backs (because at this height

the trees don't grow) but a village entire.

Not since the fifties has anyone lived here,

and then only goatherds in the summer months.

His wife's down in the valley. She's been here once.

Adolfo's threaded a wire necklace with

the pasture's scattering of ruminant teeth

chamois, deer, ibex-by the candle's glow.

His own teeth are giving him trouble, though.

The doctor's got him on an antibiotic,

so we drink his red wine for him and talk:

the Northern League, what Martial has to say

about mushrooms (parting with them isn't easy).

Across the valley, lights of villages

come up in dieir frail loop: Indemini's

first, then Biegno, Lozzo, Armio, Graglio. …

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