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Dear I--,

We were welcomed by the old men. They stopped

buffing motorscooters to shout, "Ciao, bella!", nodded,

and then picked up their cloths again. The older women

are the best, though, strolling along the Tiber in fur

and Gucci sunglasses; they don't let age interfere with their right

to be fabulous. At the Pantheon, I was one of those mortals

in an alien invasion movie where I watched the blue sky pass

through the hole in the dome as if it were a blue-lighted spaceship.

If you come, go to the Trevi Fountain for the figures, muscles

like swelled melons, emerging from the wall, for the rush of water

against the smooth marble, for the story of the boarded-up window.

Throw a coin over your shoulder. But the police will stop you

if you think you’re living La Dolce Vita,

and splash around in the pool.






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