The Laneway by Frances Daggar Roberts

italy stefano valeri

The Laneway
by Frances Daggar Roberts

You can measure the weight
of Italian Autumn days
in flowers and colours.
This day is ochre-shaded
with a heavy drugging perfume
of ripe fruit.
We walk down the narrow cobbled ways
familiar now with clumps of weeds,
the corners where dogs defecate,
the fences where grapes hang
within our reach,
the gardens where the voices call

PHOTO: Laneway in Italy, near Rome. Photo by Stefano Valeri, used by permission.

NOTE: Lariano is a municipality in the Metropolitan City of Rome in the Italian region Lazio, located about 22 miles southeast of Rome on the Alban Hills.

lariano grandma

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem is based on the simplicity and beauty of the area around Lariano, Italy, where members of my family have lived for many years. The poem is intended to reflect a local joy in gardening and the celebration of a cherished,  fruitful, and hard-working district.

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: Here, I’m discussing my pictures with Nona (Grandma) in Lariano.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Frances Daggar Roberts is an Australian poet who grew up in a remote area, where she began to write poetry to capture the love she felt for plants, animals, and landscape. She now lives in a bushland setting close to Sydney and works as a psychologist treating significant anxiety and depression.

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