At The Cafe Trieste

The music of ancient Greece
and Rome did not come down to us
but this morning
I read Virgil’s Eclogues
struck by the prophecy
of a new era:
“A great cycle of centuries
begins. Justice returns to earth,
the Golden Age returns,” he wrote
30 years before the end
of his millennium, describing
the birth of the infant god, come down
from heaven. Jesus was 19
when Virgil died at 89.
Will the Golden Age ever come?
Same faces throw up each generation,
same races, emotions, struggles!
all those centuries, those countries!
languages, songs, discontents!
They return here in San Francisco
as I sit in the Cafe Trieste.
O recitative of years!
O Paradiso! sings the jukebox
as Virgil and Verdi combine
in this life to show
this is the only Golden Age
there’ll ever be

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