Corroded Counsel by Lori Lipsky We suffered the queue for two hot hours In shade near the underbelly of Rome’s Great Colosseum To pay and climb steps up and higher In order to view the rotted and decayed remains Of a site that was once both Grand and grotesque Privileged at last to stand on that platform Near fellow beings of centuries ago Who shouted and cheered against sufferers As a mob of frenzied haters I wondered how a populace grew So merciless and cruel— it seemed Unthinkable such events could occur But the putrefaction Of the Colosseum innards Shouts to us its silent warning Be kind, be kind ~published by The Penwood Review, fall 2011, volume 15, number 2
photo credits: Colosseum interior from istockphoto
Notes: The final destination of our August 2010 family vacation was Rome, Italy. My biggest surprise of the Mediterranean trip was how much I loved Rome. Everywhere you look, the ancient and modern co-exist. Fascinating.
Standing inside the Colosseum and seeing the rotted remains for the first time impacted me in an unexpected, powerful way.