Monday, May 02, 2011


On the day when 1.5 million people gathered in Rome for the beatification of the Blessed Pope John Paul 11, the  50,000 inhabitants of Modica also remembered this most human of pontiffs by unveiling a statue of him in the little garden on this roundabout in the modern Sorda district.

I am pleased to be able to report that the seats in this pleasant oasis, for so long disfigured by graffiti, have had a makeover for the occasion:

This seems an appropriate day on which to repost Antonio Lonardo's poem Outsider, which is dedicated to the Blessed Pope John Paul 11, along with my translation.  The poem is published in our collection Il Profumo del Pensiero.  [For details, see the sidebar.]


Policromia dell’esistenza,
incrollabile empireo
di una vita vissuta
a coniugare costantemente
la forza delle idee
con il turbinìo dei tempi…

Caleidoscopica luce,
venuta dall’Oriente,
ha attraversato i deserti
dei cuori induriti,
scavalcando i muri,
caduti con le ideologie.

Desideroso di vita,
ha baciato, estatico,
le orchidee trasparenti,
fecondate dall’amore
e protese nel tempo
a raggiungere il cielo.

Strabilianti coincidenze,
profeticamente scatenate,
di pericolosi attacchi
miracolosamente superati:
eroismo decretato
dalle masse festanti.

Coraggiosa volontà
d’inginocchiarsi alla storia
e chiedere perdono
di macroscopici errori:
costante paradosso
di tempi ormai superati.

Universale visione,
ha valicato confini contratti,
inchinandosi a qualsiasi terra,
per avvicinare l’umanità
alla radice comune
di un’unica origine.

Incessante torre orante
di visione geo-trascendente
per disincantare i temuti silenzi
di un Dio certamente offeso
da insensati conflitti
scatenati da supposti moventi.

Dolorosa esistenza
del corpo e dello spirito:
assurda miopia di gruppi,
provvidenzialmente sconfitti
da miracolosa resistenza
decantata dalla storia.


A many-coloured existence,
unshakeable empyrean
of a life lived
constantly linking
the intensity of ideas
with the turbulence of the times…

Kaleidoscopic light,
coming from the East,
you crossed the deserts
of hardened hearts,
climbing over walls
felled with their ideologies.

Lover of life,
you kissed, ecstatically,
the lucent orchids,
conceived in love
and reached out in time
whilst seeking heaven.

Astounding coincidences,
prophetically unleashed,
dangerous attacks
miraculously survived:
decreed a hero
by rejoicing crowds.

The courageous will
to kneel before history
and ask forgiveness
for macroscopic errors:
constant paradox
of times now past.

Universal vision,
you crossed agreed boundaries,
bowing in any land,
to bring humanity close
to the common root
of a single origin.

Incessant tower of prayer
of geo-transcendent vision
breaking the fearful silence
of a surely offended God
at senseless conflicts
loosed by so-called “causes”.

A painful existence
of body and of spirit:
the absurd myopia of groups,
providentially defeated
by the miraculous resistance
extolled by history.


Unknown said...

That's a wonderful remembrance commemorating a saintly man.

LindyLouMac said...

I love the post title :)

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I agree, Nick. Thanks, LindyLouMac. x


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