Rome Reading with Francesca Bell and Alessandra Bava

Well, this is embarrassing. Under the influence of a highly tumultuous summer, I completely forgot to mention the reading I gave in Rome with Francesca Bell and Alessandra Bava. It was my first reading ever, unless you count the time I murmured a few poems under my breath at a bar in NYC just after my very first publication in 1999 or so.

It was a miracle this reading even happened – on June 29, which is Roman holiday. Francesca was in town on vacation, and – after a little fancy footwork – we organized this reading at Otherwise Bookshop with Alessandra, a poet and translator who has rendered some of Francesca’s poems in Italian.

It was an amazing experience to walk from my family’s home near St. Peter’s up Via del Governo Vecchio, to read a poem that takes place in that very stretch and which is the gravitational center (and title) of my book. So many important events in my life have happened in that little tangle of streets along the Tiber, and I’ve tried to get some of it into my poems.

Below you can listen to me read four poems from Unburial: “Runaway“, “Unburial” “The Skaters” and “To the Horned Moon” from the June 29th reading. (Warning: I sound like Carnegie Hall-era Lenny Bruce at times.) Somewhere, there is video…

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