Sunday, March 12, 2017

March 12, 2017

Even I am linguist enough to hear that Venetian is not Italian.

On the blazing street where I had lunch yesterday, a Chinese man and an African man were conversing in vehement Italian–politics, I think. I thought, “this is the world I want to live in. This is blessed.”

News seems to be that Asheville is having a blizzard. Outside my window, the blue over the red roofs is brilliant, vernal, enticing. I did notice yesterday that the Venetians were out in their scarves and down jackets while we tourist sported about in T-shirts. All in what you’re used to.

Ah, the 9 AM bells. Time to get started.

Today was Art Day. Started at L’Accademia, most startling, most wonderful. A score of paintings that I have known all my life suddenly appear before me. Yes, when I think that Bellini is my favorite painter, I am often right. Everything, beautiful, immense, daring, larger than any life, than all life, beautiful, beautiful. The Giorgione even stranger than one thought. The handsome saints could have walked in off the Venetian streets. I am weeping with greed for more art and more art, greed that is satisfied with each turn of the corridor. Joyful. I jog to the Peggy Guggenheim. At one point there is an old bulldog soaking up the sun. He follows me into a shop and accepts my caresses. I perceive he is the shop owner’s dog, and has nothing to do but shuttle between the sunlight and affection from his mom’s customers. Blessed, blessed, I think. Peggy Guggenheim’s ranch palazzo is full of art and full of tourists. The Ernsts and the Miros can stand with the masterpieces I just left at the Accademia. Much can’t. The muddy, sloppy Pollocks are almost sickening. Drink Earl Grey in Peggy’s garden. She has tiny daffodils. Hike to Santa Maria del Salute and then hang out at the Dogana, because Pound mentions it; I forget why. Stop and lunch at the Lineadombra, which I specify because of sharp practice. In America a “special” has a special price. Here they elaborately specified “special” added twenty euro at every patti, and I had my first ever, and probably last ever, 100 euro lunch. The service was elaborate to the pont of parody, the ambience was exquisite, the food average, which in that setting and at that price equals disappointing.. Swallowed hard and went on with my day. Found an art show called Bestiary in a warehouse under the Dogana. It was skulls nailed to boards. Was asked direction several times; since it was to places I had just left, I was able to help. Walked at sunset toward San Marco. The golden moon was rising at the end of the Grand Canal. I did not bring my camera, and the glory of the rising moon was enhanced by its ephemerality. Had drinks at an “American bar” named for some countess. Made friends. Was happy. Gave my chair to a staggering drunk old American lady. Drank too much, found my way through the labyrinth, made it home.

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