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The book The House of the World has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and is now available on Amazon.

Antonio’s Lament

Oh Rosa, what have we done?
It is so gray, so cold here.
Even the sea is cold.
Where is our beautiful sea?
Our blue meadows?
Where the sun lays on the stone
like a blanket.
Not even the dirt is clean here!
The stone here doesn’t give
the sun back!
It eats up the light.

Oh Rosa, what wind carried us here?
How can the olives grow?
What will happen to the lemons,
the oranges?
What have we done!
We mustn’t be blown away!
Let the wind scatter us like leaves.
None of us will live.

Sing Rosa,
sing my darling,
we won’t hear the strange voices,
the echoes of these dark houses.
These windows that look down on us
with pity.
We are from Sicily!
We are the children of the Blessed Mother!
We will teach them to grow
lemons and olives!
Grapes to hang from their boxes.
Wine, to fill the sorrow
of their emptiness.

We are the new world.
We bring the gold with us.
Sing Rosa, call out with joy!
Do not let this city see us weep.
Do not let this city see our fear.
We are its new children.
We will put our churches
on its streets,
and fill the air with the aroma of Sicily.
Its sweetness.
Oh Rosa, sing.
Let our tears be seen as joy!

Published inIndex of all Poems