Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Traveling Woman

    In Venice, resting.

Now our travels are over. Now the old stones and waterways, whether of the upper Thames or the Grand Canal, settle someplace deep inside of me, whether of the ancient Roman columns embedded in a building of the 20th century or the 15th century walls of old Oxford; the Jewish ghettos and expulsions I traced from the grand spires of Magdalene through the Roman once- pestilant ridden alloted land of the Jewish quarter to the Venetian old artisan Jewish ghetto tucked behind the railroad station, in blistering Florentian heat we stood before the house of Dante where I bowed my head to the poet who created a language, in a cooler Roman night I turned in the piazza and saw looming over me the hooded statue of Giodorno Bruno, heretic thinker who saw the possibilities of the vast reaches of space, his body set ablaze by the inquisitors for the travels of his mind. Oh the places we have been, the friends who traveled with us, the waters we crossed--Venice the last port of call, where I leaned against old walls and wondered at the beauty, the weight of marble on the shimmerings of the lagoon.
The weight of the present, a people trying to survive. Italy like Greece, who hold so much of the world's beauty, made fragile by monetary systems that do not stop to look. I am back and I have travelled with all my concerns, with all my knowledge of the privilege of free movement. How grateful I am for the beauty of this world.

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