The Floating City

By W. E. Pasquini

is drowning Each day
a green swallow of liquid

fist The city
drowns while the people flow over bridges past windows past shops past canals
past cafes past

me lost in their velvet wake How I wish
I could be like them—

so serene so quiet—
quiet as Istrian marble
as the bow of a gondola
as glass at the end of a pipe

even as they rush over this filament-thin slick this moist membrane
of myrtle this mist of morning this fog of breath this wet veil lighter than the taste

of water

through reeds in the lagoon

The city each day will drown—
and I would float

faceless through each calle breathing
in the white scent of wet bone


W. E. Pasquini’s poetry has appeared in Cheat River Review, Yemassee Literary Journal, Cider Press Review, The Meadows, Fourth River, and Flare. Pasquini has been nominated for a Pushcart and has been a finalist in various book and chapbook competitions, including New Rivers Press’s MVP, Yellowjacket Press’s Peter Meinke Contest, Concrete Wolf Poetry Contest, and Frost Place Competition. Pasquini completed an MFA in creative writing and studied film at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida.