Mark Strand, ink drawing.
“I Too Am …”
I dream of my house on the Gianicolo
near Villa Pamphili,
green all the way to the sea,
a penthouse fall of old sun,
always cruelly new in Rome.
I’d build a veranda on the balcony
with dark curtains, of impalpable cloth.
I’d have a light custom-made table
placed in a corner
with a thousand drawers,
one for each manuscript so as not to violate
the insatiable hierarchies of my inspiration …
Ah, a bit of order, a bit of sweetness
in my work, in my life …
All around I’d put seats and armchairs,
together with a small antique table
and a few old paintings by cruel mannerists,
with golden frames, set against the bare structure of the veranda.
—Pier Paolo Pasolini
Excerpt from the poem, “I Too Am … ,” from Roman Poems by Pier Paolo Pasolini. Translated by Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Francesca Valente (Pocket Poet Series No. 41). Courtesy and © 1986, City Lights Books, San Francisco.