Susan Castillo Street




Under the Volcano, 23 June 2016

In the distance, Mt. Etna rises,
summit veiled in smoke
and clouds.  Below, fields ripple out,
fold into deep blue valley.

I sit at a café on the square.
Passegiata crowds surge and swirl.
Two men strum plaintive mandolins.
At a nearby table, a tourist reads his news.

Bold headlines blare and blast,
boast of regained sovereignty.
It all seems so remote here
on this island in the sun.

I look to the horizon,
feel beneath my feet
the trembling  ground ,
the coming rain of liquid fire.




Susan Castillo Street is Harriet Beecher Stowe Professor Emerita, King’s College, University of London.  She has published three collections of poems, The Candlewoman’s Trade (Diehard Press, 2003), Abiding Chemistry,  (Aldrich Press, 2015), and Constellations (Three Drops Press, 2016), as well as several scholarly monographs and edited anthologies. Her poems have appeared in Southern Quarterly, Ink Sweat & Tears, Messages in a Bottle, The Missing Slate, Clear Poetry, Three Drops from a Cauldron, Foliate Oak, The Yellow Chair Review, and other journals and anthologies.

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