Poetry / Poets

3 poems by Peter L. Scacco


The ancient woman
sings her shrill monody
in the distance
splintering the calm
of morning,

her ululations
ancestral outpourings
that stab at life
like nocturnal howls
from the pack.

There is survival
within that wailing voice
as it drowns out
the songs of the doves
at dawn,

saturating me
and all the blood-red leaves
of nandina
that line this soft path
of shade.


The great agave
becomes tarantula
rearing itself
on its spiny legs,
stopping me

dead in my path, stunned
beneath the midday sun.
I had seen it
many times before

sensing its thrusting
out brazenly at me,
its inveighing
against me, this thing
in passing

I’ve simply ignored
as pale blue succulence,
this otherness
that never will look
the same.


I saw them standing
there amid the shadows,
brazen surrogates
of my indolence, ready
to proffer blandishments
for the life

I had given them.
And, atop the fierce steps
of that palazzo
built by my erudition,
I knew I must face them
once again,

even though they, posed
as if contemplating
the antique ruins
in a Piranesi print,
could scarcely imagine
themselves dead.


3 thoughts on “3 poems by Peter L. Scacco

  1. While I congratulate you on having your poems published I must be hionest. I don’t see the poetry in them. Your habit of sticking erudite language at convenient places acts as more of a staccato to any cadence that might, might be present. The subject seemed vague as though the poet were privy to secret or private information that would explain the poems. On the whole the languagew did nothing to want me to go further than these three poems. This is not a personal attack, merely a straight forward personal assessment of what my experience was. You are, I believe in plenty of company as there is much work being done in this mode. Unfortunate but true.>KB

    • Thank you, sir, for the congratulatory comment.

      As you must know, your image bears an amazing resemblance to Oscar Wilde. What an interesting choice — now there was an “erudite” man!

      While I did not find any of the language I used in these three pieces especially “erudite”, I did use the word “erudition” in “Veduta”. As you offered no specifics in your critique, it is difficult for me to be precise in my reply, but perhaps you are referring to that poem “Veduta” when you use the word “erudite”..

      As you may know, the word “veduta”, which means “view” in Italian, is used frequently (and commonly) to describe a scene of a fantastic Roman ruin created by G.B. Piranesi (the artist referenced in the poem), whose work I have admired since university days long ago.

      If you are, in fact, referring to either or both of the other poems, I see nothing at all “erudite” about them. Perhaps another reading would give you additional insights and make you feel differently.

      In any event, as you have indicated your desire not “to go further” with my poems, then I, as well, will go no further with my comments. At least I am pleased you took the trouble to read these poems once.

      Peter L. Scacco

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