Raise High the Gondola Oars

The day JD Salinger died,
I was standing near St Mark’s Square
watching the pigeons attack
a tourist
who’d been too reckless
with a handful of seeds.

The weather was overcast,
the clouds hung low
like marshmallow soufflé,
water in the distance slapping against
idle gondolas.

A brawny Venetian
on his way to the kilns
bumped me out of the moment

and the erstwhile silent ruckus
buffaloed my senses again.

— ptkh 04.19.10

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