Gabriella Garofalo – Two Poems


The pulse of heart, of wings…

The pulse of heart, of wings,
The intractable living hours –
Your life.
Some flowers chase light,
But soul feels in awe, she slips out –
Begetter, this long waiting gets on my nerves
When you carve out of light them rebels,
When trees argue downtown:
The last fire stayed put, right?
So they wonder –
I know, you’re the barren,
That’s why you hurl them
At bloody evening of trees, biting hunger –
I know, you’re the barren,
Where the goddess hides amongst teens and flowers –
Blue funk of cliffs and cracks? Nope,
She’s done, who cares if they’re missing,
She’s nothing to do with them,
Their fault if they’re blind –
Oh, and where’s her daughter? –
Go on, cut her some slack
Until she starts scourging
Body and its light –
Beware, land, she’s dyslexic,
Of course she speaks them apart.

Feverish, maybe sick…

Feverish, maybe sick –
Those flowers look pale.
C’mon, c’mon, why are they still?
Your hands, I mean, can’t you play light,
Can’t you get your tricks?
Look, she hangs there,
Gangways, halls, street corners,
No tickets, she travels for free,
A skinny smart cat in the guts of the town –
Is it their fault if they look down at the pavement,
Pick up scraps of paper for free,
While their children remind you of darkish black worms?
Now she has to deal with him,
Better to stay overnight –
The reptile’s got a shack in the suburbs –
Or hang around until dawn comes along –
Sorry, only a handful of hours
For you to remember those tricks,
Not much time left, get a move on
Or swipe those flowers –
They’re so nowhere –
Really, God.


Author’s Statement on Beauty

The sea: how beautiful looks the white foam of the waves – yet waves can get dangerously wild.

The mountain: how beautiful look the snowy white peaks – yet snow can turn into an avalanche.

The poem: how beautiful sound its words; yet, if they happen to touch a raw nerve in our souls they can hurt us deeply.

Theocritus called beauty  “an evil in an ivory setting”.

I like to think of it as an ivory ambivalence, a powerful warning of the elusive complexity innate in life,

a thin, unbreakable mirror that reflects the shining ambiguity of nature and mankind.

Oscar Wilde wrote “Beauty is the only thing that time cannot harm.”

I’m afraid it can, perhaps only to give it a different – even more ambivalent – shape.

Born in Italy some decades ago, Gabriella Garofalo fell in love with the English language at six, and in the same year started writing poems (in Italian). She is the author of Lo sguardo di OrfeoL’inverno di vetroDi altre stelle polari and Blue Branches.