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On Not Translating Dante’s Canto XVI

When the crazy years fall under the rumba
and the water’s so hot, it spirals into similes,
quelled. Arnie and Fannie rumba away
though three men try to part them.
The corridor rings with old Mel Torme songs
and passion underneath it all. The place
is filled with little pigs who drink martinis
and wine every night, and the grave man
who says “The trees!” over and over as if you didn’t notice.
Stay sober,sashay your clever nose to the Bossa Nova.
Like chimes, those little pigs live in our memories
Just recently, at Vecchi’s bakery, then later
like stars in the firmament,
It anchors me to purchase all I remember.
As my doctor will attest,
It’s natural. She’s crazy, he’ll decide.

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