Summer Stood Naked


Gabriele D'Annunzio

The first glimpse I saw was of her narrow foot

sliding easily along the burning pines

where the air was big with heat;

trembling, an almost-white blaze shot forth.

The cicadas were quiet. More rocks were crapped

into the streams. Resin flowed copiously

down the creaking tree trunks.

I recognized the voice of the green snake.

I caught up with her in the olive grove.

I saw her in the copper-cerulean shadows

striding backwards, her tawny head

without silver or palladium flying through

without a sound. Further on, there was no stubble;

Fallodola leaped into a clean groove;

I shouted, I shouted her name to the sky,

then her name I called again.

Among the oleanders I saw her turn.

Like a bronzy mass of wheat

mowed down she entered them, and they closed behind her clamorously.

Further on, flowing down the beach between the strands of seaweed,

she twisted her foot and fell.

Stretched out and fallen between the sand and Pacque.

The west wind skimmed my hair.

Immense was her appearance, immense her nudity.

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