The Jersey shore of Italy,
no women topless by the water,
its air of humid modesty
hung heavily on Penny’s daughter
and heavier on her son. That night
in the square’s al fresco ring
its local pride, a bantamweight,
thrilled the mob by pummeling
a young Slovakian. At three
we woke to flashing lights and screams.
A Fiat parked two cars away
from ours sat swimming in flames.
Her son slept on. He wouldn’t believe
our news next morning: the scrubbed street shone.
Penny kissed me. “Go down, love,
you start the car. Then we’ll get in.”