Bassano Moon, by Terrence Sykes

bright as that
votive candle
lit after mass
rises above those
war torn mountains
partaking red wine before
dreaming of crepuscolo

mere shadow of a man
paralyzed & nightmares
battling memories
scarring my soul
flashbacks & delusion

traditional shot of grappa
upon grandmother’s
ancient flowering rose
aiming for the roots
pricked my already maimed finger
bleeding upon sacred soil
blood of an unmartyred saint


I often write about WWI/II  probably because I like the Italian poets between the wars – I always try to make it a persona poem and take myself there.  Bassano was the little city at the foot of Monte Grappa where soldiers from all over Italy stopped before marching into those mountains to perish or be maimed for both wars – but fortified the fragile body with Grappa before ascending into Hell. 

2 thoughts on “Bassano Moon, by Terrence Sykes

  1. A poignant and beautifully written poem. I can relate to your thoughts and feelings as my mother’s uncle was killed in WWI. His body was never found. I like Italian poets such as Ungaretti and Montale.

    Liked by 1 person

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