Musings on Claudia Piccino’s Poetry in The Stone Sphinx / By: Maja Herman Sekulic

Claudia Piccino
Musings on Claudia Piccino’s Poetry in The Stone Sphinx
I have known Claudia Piccino for years as a distinguished Italian poet, an unstoppable and selfless international poetry promoter through her generous actions and her valuable translations of a number of books including my recent poetry collection, but only after reading twice her latest poetry collection, The Stone Sphinx, because its richness often takes reading and rereading, I consider her now my true sister in verse because of her preference for long dramatic monologues in the tradition of Robert Browning, monologues that is really addressing the other, “you”, the word and the world in a dialogue with itself and oneself but also very short, almost haiku-like, forms.
Her varied and far-ranging bilingual volume The Stone Sphinx includes a substantial selection of poems, each poem aflame with a different light cast on our prospects of life and death, love and hate, stupidity and wisdom. Her poetry allows itself to acknowledge the fears of inadequacy, insecurity, lack of freedom and inauthenticity that any poet today encounters more and more but is not always courageous enough to face and express. Claudia Piccino is brave enough to say in couple of poems to her dead father, to the world:
“…do not call me
look at me”
After reading The Stone Sphinx, I know that Claudia Piccino is a rarely gifted postmodern poet of brave and yet soulful verses that show us the deepest scars of love hurts, betrayals and disappointments through her poetic “word” which is her “blade”:
I am glass
It is the word
My sharp blade.
It slits the chains
And crosses borders.
The silence weighs a lot more
On the one who is silent.
I become a word
And I fly in the sky,
Light and casual.
The poetic word is thus her strength, the “wall” she tries to build around herself by her art that will shield her from the often hostile world. Yet, as a highly emotional and sensitive poet, a human, a mother, a daughter, a wife, a lover, a woman, Claudia Piccino yearns for freedom to escape the sphinx eternal smile, to take off masks, break the “silence”, shatter the glass, the wood, the wall, the stone, the marble and embrace the self and the world with open heart and arms.
Maja Herman Sekulic

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