TWO POETS: A Poem by Neeli Cherkovski


Lombardo and Bava
two Italian poets today sent poems, one
from Venice, and one from
Rome, Anna and Alessandra, and now
I have taken the poems
and began to think of the shadows
and crevices, the deep gorges and
simple lights, I mean I started thinking
inside of the poems, as if I had
been reborn in them by the simple act
of reading

Anna, earnest, finding truth
in things, tracking words
down to the skull of a timeless memory –
what poetry means to do
to pull me into the sea lead me
up the mountain place me
in my own place shake branches
of our tree late afternoon

Alessandra, vivid, a poem for Henry Miller
and one on Baudelaire, a poem
deep in  the maudit’s heart – she swims
in mysteries of exquisite creation
as word alone gathers strength
by the ashen grove and speeds along
across dunes and flat plains

poems at my fingertips
from these two, and when I look again
it’s the wisdom
of not knowing everything, the peace
of not being absolutely sure
of all things, the gratitude
for their taking the time to share


Neeli was so nice as to send me this poem he wrote, today. He truly made my day. To touch a poet of his caliber makes me very happy.


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