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The School of Athens


They look to tired critics like mere busts

In galleries, but wittingly collected,

By bold anachronism resurrected,

This flesh so warm a skeptic almost trusts

The felt, unliteral fidelity

That framed them under sky and vaulting roof:

The red-cloaked Heracleitus still aloof,

Parmenides still pondering "to be,"

Young Aristotle marking out this world,

Old Plato pointing upward to the forms.

Behind them rise dear clouds, heartbreaking storms,

Lightning that Zeus and gray Jehovah hurled,

And from a corner, winkingly alive,

The face of Raphael at twenty five.


Anthony Lombardy



____; originally printed in Italian Americana.
Reprinted by permission of the author.

by Grapholina

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