(reading the paper placemat at Colombo’s)
Start at the heel of the boot,
at the sumptuously-named Lecce,
and run your finger around the graceful
toe, beaded with Sicilian heat.
Move slowly upwards, pausing at the knee
to genuflect at the Holy City, then on
to gaze in awe at the high-swept sinews
of the landscape leading up to Assisi.
Come around the thigh, taking time to
taste the savors of Bologna, Parma, Genoa,
circling over and round the graceful
inland swell of the northern provinces
and down, down again to glide
upon the glistening canals of
Venice, whispering softly as the
red wine disappears like a sunset.