Pina Piccolo – I Would Have Liked To Be patti smith


I would have liked to be
patti smith.
Locks of rebellious
gray hair.
gaunt visage.
The jacket:
the worn-out one
from Horses
that dangles
from a shoulder.
And to continue tapping
with your slim foot
to the rhythm of that innate dissonance.

But the metamorphosis
which struck me
was another.
Not the one that befalls
that buxom stage
of the pupa
swelling up
full of life.

At a certain age
of common mortals
the cocoon
splits open,
prolapsing organs,
and the neck,
tired of holding up
the burden of the neurons,
gives way.
The lip is not afraid
to articulate
its blades.

The protean race
of the cells
to pigeonhole themselves
in time
marks my sisterhood with Daphne
in the roulette wheel
of the smoothness of skin
which alters turning to tree bark
the lapis lazuli
on the leg;
it catches me
not to say

But in Time
the shape-shifter
we must place our trust
that nothing —
not the shrewd hand
of the market
nor the horrified
gaze of comparison —
shall prevent
the reawakening
of that hidden sense
which, with age,
lurks quietly within,
perceiving the music
of distant spheres.

Not respecting
earthly aesthetics,
the seventh sense
is subject only
to the truth
that we are a single energy
emanating from distant galaxies;
thus I confidently await
that in some dimension
parallel to mine,
I will not be denied
the joy of yet being able
to become patti smith.

Translated by Don Stang and Helen Wickes

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Pina Piccolo
Pina Piccolo is a Calabrian-Californian blogger, translator and writer who writes and publishes in Italian and English. In Italy she collaborates with several magazines including Versante Ripido, El Ghibli, Le Voci della Luna, Frontiere News, Carmilla online and, in the past, Sagarana. Her poems and essays are featured in anthologies and paper magazines in both Italian and English. She is one of the founders of, container of writings from the world, which she currently coordinates, and director of "The Dreaming Machine", digital magazine of literature and culture directed to the English-speaking world. In 2018 her collection "I canti dell'Interregno" was published by the Lebeg publishing house.