Two Poems

Donna Pucciani

Photo Credit: Greger Ravik/Flickr (CC-by)

Landscape, Sorrento

Ages ago, Sorrento
made a pact with the sea:

I give you lemons,
you give me the bay.

Limoncello and cobblestones
coexist with fish and salt.

Citrus soaps and souvenirs
gird the waves yellow

while Vesuvius sleeps
like a beached whale

on an aqua sky,
one eye half-open,

and inside,
lava boiling in its bowels.

For now, a cliffside view of shoreline
and a lemon sorbet.


Less is More

We speak of our aging bodies:
which part has decomposed
most recently. Nursing a bad knee,
hooked up to hearing aids, eyeglasses,
artificial joints, canes and walkers,
wearing marshmallow shoes
and dated woolen caps, we are
comical indeed, drawing derision
from the young.

Bookstores have become museums,
the symphony a sea of gray heads.
Goodbye to radios, the cinema, newspapers,
landlines, and typewriters that clacked
clustered syllables.

So we progress towards death
as our parents and their parents did
before them, falling asleep in favorite chairs,
dawdling instead of walking,
driving cars as old and battered as we,
listening to the obsolete music
of our youth.

The years gather us in like a flock
of geese, at once foolish and determined
to walk in our own webbed waddle
against the traffic and back into
the seasons in which we’ve loved life
far too much for our own good.


Donna Pucciani, a Chicago-based writer, has published poetry worldwide in such journals as Shi Chao Poetry, Poetry Salzburg, Istanbul Literary Review, Gradiva, and Acumen. A seven-time nominee for the Pushcart Prize, her most recent book of poems is Edges. Email: dpucciani[at]

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