All posts tagged: Naples

The Spirit of the Place

By ANTONIO ROMANI

 

Urbino, a Renaissance jewel in central Italy. My first visit there in many years. I knew no one there, nor was I in touch with anyone from my grandmother Antonia’s family—assuming any were left.

One evening, as I was ascending a cobblestone street towards the city’s outer walls, I noticed a group of people gathered around an uncovered manhole. Intrigued, I moved closer. A group of amateur speleologists was about to begin a nocturnal exploration of underground Urbino; to my surprise they asked me if I wanted to join them. Squeezing down the manhole’s narrow, vertical, metal stairs, I found myself in a long tunnel. The guides began talking, but I wasn’t listening, mesmerized by the scattering flashes of their helmets’ lights. I felt I was physically penetrating the past—an imagined past. My father’s city’s past, unknown to him and to me.

Debbie WenThe Spirit of the Place
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Graffito Beholds a Sculpted Dionysus Head

By STEVE BARBARO

                                                                                    Archeological Museum, Napoli

     Beard-barnacled, chokingly-fixed, almost somehow stupid, yes,
almost like will itself pushed to the extreme of its own
absence, almost like presence perpetuated so as to obliterate

personhood’s merest increments—ah, but don’t
listen to even the soundest advice you are given, never, never, no,
Graffito is sure he hears the inert face telling him, yeah,

              forget pondering your person in light of pure practicalities,
and fuck letting any of the standard measures of modern
existence—money or fame, say, or so-called community, or (gasp 

         gasp) success—clutter the local, the cosmic
clatter of the single soul clanging the skin and organs

Emily EverettGraffito Beholds a Sculpted Dionysus Head
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