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A foreign affair

by rushforth 

Posted: 06 February 2007
Word Count: 237

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A foreign affair
(for Mara)

As soon as he steps out of the airport
he is intoxicated, stirred by her scents.
From the back of a taxi he stares up at the hills
while she questions him about the life he leads elsewhere -
those hills named for Artemide
and famed for their mud spas and blood hounds.

Later, he wanders the squares of the city of her intellect
with their fountains that giggle and glint in the sun.
This is a country where he feels at home.

He has been here only in winter
when the women wear padded undergarments
and rarely doff their mittens even in restaurants
but their sable hats
set off their dark eyes
so charmingly.

He imagines the seasons he has not seen:
the procession of candles on the river on the night of the Harvest Ball,
the weight of August when thunder squats between the hills,
but above all, the riotous spring,
when, at the end of the carnival lunch,
girls of marriageable age
bathe naked at the spa.

After the cognac,
their brothers and fathers
stalk through the beech trees
sporting cigars and binoculars.

You may remember the tragedy
that year when a cable car
plummeted from its taut wire
and fell through the roof of the basilica.
Elsewhere it would have caused a scandal -
but she just shrugs her shoulders,
proud of her hounds for retrieving the corpses.

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Comments by other Members

peardrops at 16:24 on 24 March 2007  Report this post
Great stuff, Bob
Can just imagine the young man "intoxicated " by the atmosphere of Italy-its weight of culture and beauty.You capture that feeling through his eyes just perfectly!

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