Serena Piccoli & William Allegrezza

Street, Vase, Tide

The vase with peonies was struggling on the edge of the table
eyed by a cat and surrounded by words percolating in hands
and in the exhausted mind of the lady collapsed on the couch.
Burgundy with swirls, cotton--the feel of the space not captured where
again - she heard her sharecropper mum : stay strong, hold on,
for the streets are not friendly and the flowers fade.

The hideous statue opposite hers is now falling - dust on too many ashes.
Her vision lands and falls, bobbing on light waves alone
as the toppled colonizer bobs on waves of protests
and voices sprayed on country walls as time.
As the flowers resign, those 20 shots ricochet in her
ear memory like sinuous tides stretched inland.


She grabbed a carrot and pressed her ear against the wall
where the scratching could be heard, an animal trapped--

its black and white fluffy libido making its way up the bamboo
with ears crimped. She listened to its day-dreams in darkness
so different from the X-rated guide videos she had shown it.

While she whispered to herself obscure desires,
it reached its waxy scented mate among leathery leaves
and time ceased, fractured on its dismembered wheel,

only the echo of the two - getting closer - in the lockdown zoo
squeezing through the wall maze towards togetherness
tasting themselves after years of exploitation

by unseen hands locking them behind experimental
gardens with 8 artificial soils and harsh habitats
lights 24/7 for questioning but covered bodies.

That's entertainment - she sang in a fake ring of a garden
made of plastic wires spiraling upward towards darkness.

Forced to fight in gloves and shorts or in bikinis and miniskirts
for food while a bell buzzed without rhythm
over her hideous pantomime existence.

Locked Down

He's scratching his wall with metallic nails
as she concentrates on her resolution to
stop the pandemic with garlic
and shifty news tied to a stick, ancient reborn.

In another quarantined house they're having spinach and monoliths for dinner
while murmuring softly through fear and the daily count piling up.
Suddenly they're told they've run out of garlic
and the panic sets in, told on screens, with photo eyes.

2020 City

The old rocking chair facing the window is now empty,
and I slump in its arc under dull light. The city beyond is
waving old rock clothes on rusty wires,
and I offer some pocket change to keep the light flickering
as the clouds are purple and the thoughts are darker.
Fig leaves again as statues sink with cultural turns
and humans turn to harm with no arms
and all color gone. The morality of this situation changes
peanuts into cryptocurrency and old values into new ones
spray painted on sidewalk walls for clarity.

Serena Piccoli is an Italian poet and playwright. Her political chapbook silviotrump was published in 2017 by Moria Poetry, Chicago, USA. Her poems have been published in anthologies and magazines in UK, USA, Canada, Nigeria, Italy and Romania. She mainly writes about political, environmental, social contemporary issues with a touch of irony. She writes both in English and in Italian (her mother tongue).
Twitter: @piccoli_serena https://serenapiccoli.wixsite.com/serenapiccoli

William Allegrezza edits the press Moria Poetry and teaches at Indiana University Northwest. He has previously published many poetry books, including Step Below: Selected Poems 2000-2015, Stone & Type, Cedar, Ladders in July, Fragile Replacements, Collective Instant, Aquinas and the Mississippi (with Garin Cycholl), Covering Over, and Densities, Apparitions; two anthologies, The City Visible: Chicago Poetry for the New Century and La Alteración del Silencio: Poesía Norteamericana Reciente; seven chapbooks, including Sonoluminescence (co-written with Simone Muench) and Filament Sense (Ypolita Press); and many poetry reviews, articles, and poems. He founded and curated series A, a reading series in Chicago, from 2006-2010.
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