Friday, July 3, 2009

Poetry Friday: The Glorio of Rome

Statue of Babuino w/Bird

The Glorio of Rome

Because the Pincio is not the Pinch-ee-o
but is the Peen-cho, and because our mouths
must make that e then o, we sound like small rondini
peeping, we sound like piccolo uccelli, see?
Noi amiamo - si, we love - those long-voweled birdy-o's
in their umbrella pines, they way they make us crazy,
make us weep above the plaza of the still-here Roman popolo,
and make us want to swoop from Via Veneto
right down to Rick's Place in the crumbling Pio
chirping Peep, peep, peep, Bernini-o!

I wrote that when I was over in Rome as a graduate student.My good friend, the poet Rebecca Hoogs, is over in Rome right now as Co-Director (along with poet Johnny Horton) of the University of Washington's Creative Writing/Rome Program for the summer. She's sending wonderful photos back via Facebook. Here is one that captures the extraordinary blue of a Roman sky. I've never seen this shade of blue in the sky in any other part of the world.

Rome is definitely a city for poets. Voglio andare a bella Roma ora!! (Grande sospiro....)
Before you head off to more of Poetry Friday, here are two more photos Rebecca sent:

A dry goods store, probably near the Campo de Fiori.
What happens to colors in Rome - is it the light?

Last but not least, Johnny eating gelato and looking much more severe than he really is:

Poetry Friday today is being hosted by Tabatha Yeatts over at
The Opposite of Indifference.

Happy 4th of July tomorrow!


  1. I have so enjoyed reading your poem and seeing the photos - yes, it is definitely the light!

    Thank you for bringing lots of memories flooding back - now I need to get back on with my research into 19th century Rome!

  2. Julie, I just love the way you play with words and sounds. Your poems remind me of the joy of a kid who has discovered playing in the sprinkler on a hot August day. Thanks for sharing this!

    Favorite part:

    we sound like small rondini
    peeping, we sound like piccolo uccelli, see?

  3. Beautiful sky, beautiful colors, fun play with English and Italian!

  4. As Ogden Nash would say, Realio trulio, your wordlplay is delightful.

  5. Julie, Julie, Julie. . .all this talk of Rome reminds me a a certain novel I firmly believe someone should write. . .

  6. Kirby, if I ever write that book, I'm going to have to dedicate it to you for keeping me on track!

  7. I've been scrolling through your VCFA updates . . . nice work! I couldn't get it together to post during res.

    But what made me comment is that I took one look at that photo at the top of this post and thought . . . Carol! I know it's just that I have VCFA on the brain, but it does bear a resemblance, yes?