from issue #2: Poetry by Luke Whitington (II)


Venus in Rome

We met in the ruins
Of someone else’s civilization

Under a dying warrior
You offered me a torn half of your sandwich

Around us the silent industry
Of thighs, calves, spears

And discus-throwing arms
Held their swaying moment

A god, legless, armless, headless
Alive in absences, a plank of debris

Tossed up from art’s wreckage
Once a smooth curve of space

Today our staid facsimile.
Your eyes, sight for a divine statue

Thighs light on the heavy bench
Would find ample employment here

Lithe amongst the sobering myths
Moving through the crowd of legends.

I’ll walk you home, I said. Where is it?

Near the Pantheon, you said, I live
Perched high up, with the pigeons ….

In the dim twilight of the room
A glimmer in her eyes spoke of Venus.


LUKE WHITINGTON lived in Italy for nearly twenty years, restoring Medieval structures in Umbria and Tuscany. He continued this work in Ireland, restoring the Norman castle of Portlick at Lough Ree. He founded the multimedia gallery Pleasants Factory in Dublin, which supported artists and writers for seven years. Luke’s poems have been published in literary supplements and anthologies in Dublin and Westmeath. In Australia, Luke’s poetry has appeared three times in the Henry Kendall Award anthology and has been accepted by Quadrant, The Sydney Morning Herald and the Five Bells anthology. He has read poetry written for art in galleries at Cessnock, Bowral, Pearl Beach and the Charles Cecil Atelier Art School in Florence. He resides on the Central Coast with frequent visits to Canberra, Ireland and Renaissance Italy.

Photo (CC) John Robinson @ Flickr

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