Archivi del mese: marzo 2013

Here’s a link to the Cathedral’s event page on Facebook for the Dante reading:

And here is the list of readers


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di | marzo 27, 2013 · 10:38 PM

Here are a couple of links to poetry readings:

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di | marzo 26, 2013 · 1:46 PM


                                                            “On se relève tombé, on ne se relève pas pulvérisé”

(Victor Hugo, L’homme qui rit )


La voce dal soffitto

è un subitaneo grido :

«Schiacciatelo, l’infame ! »

e il Testimone viene strascinato,

sulla scia di quell’eco,

a un  breve e convulso pensiero:

‘Tu, Peccato-Vita, mi schiacci  —

spero solo che non calpesterai

in me un infame, e calcherai piuttosto

uno già predisposto,  un penitente’.


Bologna                                                             23-25 dicembre 2012

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O terra, inghiottimi!

A volte l’Idiota si pone

delle domande idiote, per esempio:

‘Se d’improvviso sgorgo in lacrime

di fronte ad altri e voglio scomparire

(“Trágame, tierra!”)

che cosa è che mi fa più vergogna  —

che gli altri mi guardino oppure

che distolgano gli occhi da me?’

Hamilton Hall

Columbia University                                             20 novembre 2012

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Songe et non rêve

Per Alberto Bertoni


L’Idiota  non  sa  ballare

ma s’illude sovente di danzare

in una danza che evoluziona e vòlita

da Shiva a Davide

e da Davide nuovamente a Shiva.


La danza è distrazione dal peccato

che aveva distratto dalla vita

e la preghiera

distrae dalla danza.

L’Idiota sogna  —

meglio detto: fantastica a occhi aperti,

oltre la tecnologia del sogno  —

che la sua arrivi a  essere

una danza mentale precativa

in cui le preghiere spuntino

dalle sue unghie e dalle mani tese

in benefici artigli.


Riverside Drive, Manhattan                                                               18 novembre 2012

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The Fish, the Man, and the Spirit

by Leigh Hunt



To a Fish


You strange, astonished-looking, angle-faced,
Dreary-mouthed, gaping wretches of the sea,
Gulping salt-water everlastingly,
Cold-blooded, though with red your blood be graced,
And mute, though dwellers in the roaring waste;
And you, all shapes beside, that fishy be, –
Some round, some flat, some long, all devilry,
Legless, unloving, infamously chaste: –

O scaly, slippery, wet, swift, staring wights,
What is’t ye do? What life lead? eh, dull goggles?
How do ye vary your vile days and nights?
How pass your Sundays ? Are ye still but joggles
In ceaseless wash? Still nought but gapes, and bites,
And drinks, and stares, diversified with boggles?



A Fish Answers


Amazing monster! that, for aught I know,
With the first sight of thee didst make our race
For ever stare! O flat and shocking face,
Grimly divided from the breast below!

Thou that on dry land horribly dost go
With a split body and most ridiculous pace
Prong after prong, disgracer of all grace,
Long-useless-finn’d, haired, upright, unwet, slow!

O breather of unbreathable, sword-sharp air,
How canst exist? How bear thyself, thou dry
And dreary sloth? What particle canst share
Of the only blessed life, the watery?
I sometimes see of ye an actual pair
Go by! linked fin by fin! most odiously.



The Fish Turns Into A Man, And Then Into A Spirit, And Again Speaks


Indulge thy smiling scorn, if smiling still,
O man! and loathe, but with a sort of love;
For difference must itself by difference prove,
And, in sweet clang, the spheres with music fill.
One of the spirits am I, that at their will
Live in whate’er has life – fish, eagle, dove –
No hate, no pride, beneath nought, nor above,
A visiter of the rounds of God’s sweet skill.

Man’s life is warm, glad, sad, ‘twixt loves and graves,
Boundless in hope, honoured with pangs austere,
Heaven-gazing; and his angel-wings he craves: –
The fish is swift, small-needing, vague yet clear,
A cold, sweet, silver life, wrapped in round waves,
Quickened with touches of transporting fear.


About this Poem:

“As the transition from the ludicrous to the grave, in these verses, might otherwise appear too violent, the reader will permit me to explain how they arose. The first sonnet was suggested by a friend’s laughing at a description I was giving him of the general aspect of fish (in which, by the way, if anybody is curious, let him get acquainted with them in Mr. Yarrell’s excellent work on “British Fishes,” now in course of publication); the second sonnet, being a lover of fair play, I thought but a just retort to be allowed to those fellow-creatures of ours, who so differ with us in eyeballs and opinions; and the third, not liking to leave a quarrel unsettled, and having a tendency to push a speculation as far as it will go, especially into those calm and heavenward regions from which we always return the better, if we calmly enter them, naturally became as serious as the peace of mind is, with which all speculations conclude that have harmony and lovingness for their real object. The fish, in his retort, speaks too knowingly of his human banterer, for a fish; but it will be seen, that a Spirit animates him for the purpose.”


Leigh Hunt

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Tis Late

by April Bernard

Of course the tall stringy woman

draped in a crocheted string-shawl

selling single red carnations

coned in newsprint the ones

she got at the cemetery

and resells with a god bless you

for a dollar that same woman

who thirty years ago

was a graduate student

in playwriting who can and will

recite “At the round earth’s

imagined corners, blow–”

announces silently amidst her louder

announcements that the experiment

some amateurs mixed of

white fizzing democracy

with smoky purple capitalism

has failed. We already knew that.

Her madness is my madness

and this is my flower in a cone

of waste paper I stole from

someone’s more authentic grief

but I will not bless you

as I have no spirit of commerce

and no returning customers

and do not as so many must

actually beg for my bread. It is another

accident of the lab explosion

that while most died and others lost legs

some of us are only vaguely queasy

at least for now

and of course mad conveniently mad

necessarily mad because

“tis late to ask for pardon” and

we were so carefully schooled

in false hope schooled

like the parrot who crooks her tongue

like a dirty finger

repeating what her flat bright eyes deny.

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