Painting of Venice by Luigi Querena‘Passage in Venice’: A Poem by Royal Rhodes The Society November 29, 2020 Beauty, Culture, Poetry 4 Comments They mix together here waiting for the trim black and gold gondolas heading into side canals that drain and brim with refuse and will bear souls that wait to ride. The tourist’s straying finger stutters taking photos of shadows as they linger— chiaroscuro, light and dark—along the rows of tapered mooring poles that feel the water’s bite. The domed basilica, whose gold mosaic zoo of birds and fish that shimmer, scales in glassy hue, shelters Adam. Dimmer squares of silica depict what sin will do. He and Eve, still lost in deeper loss and weary, stare at us, and we look back and count the cost. With no way back. In teary smiles we hope to see the whole be whole again. Royal Rhodes is a retired professor of religion who has taught classes in global traditions, religion & the arts, and death & dying. A trained Classicist, his poetry often reflects those ancient themes and forms. He has had poems published online and in a series of poetry/art collaborations with The Catbird [on the Yadkin Press] in North Carolina. His current project is a poetry/photography collaboration on sacred sites in Italy. NOTE: The Society considers this page, where your poetry resides, to be your residence as well, where you may invite family, friends, and others to visit. Feel free to treat this page as your home and remove anyone here who disrespects you. Simply send an email to email@example.com. Put “Remove Comment” in the subject line and list which comments you would like removed. The Society does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments and reserves the right to remove any comments to maintain the decorum of this website and the integrity of the Society. Please see our Comments Policy here. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 4 Responses Sally Cook November 29, 2020 Such a slow and beautiful poem, flowing along as do the canals, with many undercurrents of vocabulary and meaning. I hope to see more. Thank you Reply C.B. Anderson November 30, 2020 This poem, Royal, is a masterpiece of rather quiet manipulation of a reader’s sensibilities. And basilica/silica, though an identity rhyme, is masterful. You understand what you are doing here far better than I could ever explain. This poem reminds me, to some extent, of the original English poetry written by Richmond Lattimore. Classics is a good foundation from which to begin writing in the common modern tongue. Reply Margaret Coats November 30, 2020 An intriguing poem of individually well wrought stanzas that move the piece forward to become “the whole,” not quite seen as “we look back,” but promised to our “teary smiles.” As Sally says, the flow is fascinating. Reply Cynthia Erlandson December 1, 2020 I think this has an exquisitely musical flow. The rhyme scheme is intriguing; and I love the poignant ending. Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.