Alfred Brendel


lie scattered upside down
like stranded whales
Black smoke
billows from the rooftops
The dome of Santa Maria Maggiore sinks moaning
into the lagoon
One final explosion
rips apart the Doge’s Palace
Swept along by the flood
the size of tomcats
paddle about inside San Marco
and bite the clerics
who struggle to salvage what’s left of their Saint
When all is over
Mario Praz
the master of ceremonies
faces himself in the mirror
ready for the duel
of evil eyes