Chi vuol esser lieto, sia:
di doman non c'e certezza.
-Lorenzo di Medici

In the poplars' lengthening shadows on this hill,
amid the rows of marigolds and earth,
and through the boxhedge labyrinth we walk,
together, to the choiring twilight bells.
Their fugue of echoes echoes through the hills
and sings against this time-streaked, flowering wall
where breezes coax the potted lemon trees,
the pendant, yellow fruit and shiny leaves.
Beneath the flaming watercolor sky,
the cultivated, terraced dropp of hill,
a gleaming city with its towers and domes,
the Arno shimmering as its drowns the sun.

Chameleon-like, I am tranformed by light,
and wine has blurred the edges of the night.
What gifts I give on this or any night
may be refracted in another light.
You understnad this in a foreign tongue,
but vaguely, for these things will not translate.
I feel it in the cadence of your walk:
you are not whom moonlight can create.
And you will think the loosening of these thighs,
the sudden, urging whiteness of the throat
are muted but distinctly pagan cries
and in your triumph you will fairly gloat.

Tonight the unplucked lemons almost gleam.
And with their legs, the crickets harmonize.
The trees are rustling an uncertain hymn,
and unseen birds contribute trembling cries.
When did the summer censor choiring things?
We know the blood is brutal though it sings.