Alicia Patti

Rookie (Boston, MA)

Ellis Island Elegy


All the Old Timers are gone now
gone with the babushkas and the mandolins;
nevermore the tarantella or boring bocce games
played by the devoted.

Sadly lost are summertime block parties,
redolent of Italy’s seasonings;
scratchy records playing Dino and Sinatra:
benevolent hymns to the glory of the homeland,
ancient loudspeakers echoing
in mournful nostalgia.

Colorful Saint Day Parades
through cobblestoned streets, precarious
at best, are passé too.
The Madonna has been laid to rest,
along with her son, never again
to rise on Easter morning:

They have broken the backs of those old timers
and, to the rest of us

Ellis Island is but a memory.

Submitted: Sunday, April 08, 2007
Edited: Saturday, February 12, 2011

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