Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SURFACES AND MASKS; 1, by CLARENCE MAJOR

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

SURFACES AND MASKS; 1, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: And who must remain
Last Line: Suspended on a circle of pearls
Subject(s): Venice, Italy

We climbed the hill to the carriages
but saw how the royal family
behind us
drove in, slowly,
no doubt
feeling great and proud,
as they approached the castle, yet --
going on, up and in,
we laughed at the funny ones,
and admired them all,
all of them with wheels.
It was a day, an outing,
and the food was worth it,
I splashed snail sauce in my own eye!
And the ambiance was all of it.
After the big Easter feast,
in a crowded room,
we went out and sat on the grass
and I sketched
the village in the valley below
its mountains ranged beyond.
But all of this was before
the carriages: queen's,
king's, gent's.
Then we came down,
bellies still full, and feeling
grand and humble, not minding
not getting into the villa
here at Maser
where Veronese painted the walls
with hunting scenes
for the wealthy family, not minding
minding a little bit anyway,
sad and happy,
fretful and calm,
we drove back
to Venice, our city of canals.

Used with the permission of Copper Canyon Press, P.O. Box 271, Port Townsend, WA
98368-0271, www.cc.press.org

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