“Abnegation” by Iolanda Leotta

The last bell tolls of the church,
not very far from my home,
echo, roar, the resonances
around the country hears, remind:
it’s time to pray.
But how many people
turn to the Creator to be blessed?

It’s midday, it’s almost lunch-time,
but who for a moment will remember
those who can’t feed?
The philanthropy, the charity,
if it exists yet,
few people want to pursue it–
simple souls ready to donate
without expecting love in return,
ready to die for a worthy cause,
without receiving glory and honor.
But what are awards and honors
If you’re a despicable person,
an impostor,
that using the cunning of the fox,
subjugates the lambs
for personal purpose?

Among the ashy doves that fly,
stands out one snow-white,
that often settles on the bell tower,
It symbolizes the utopian, futuristic,
“universal peace,” impossible to achieve.
There’s a need of mutual love,
but people die with selfishness, alienation,
bad mood.

It’s evening, the last bell tolls
announce the “Hail Mary.”
I think to the self-abnegation;
I see my mother’s tears
when she kneels to worship
“The Madonna of the Sea,”
sculpted by her son, on the garden wall.
It seems to say:
“Mother! I’ll never leave you,
How can I forget you and live on
you gave me life so many times?”




Iolanda Leotta was born in Italy. She holds a degree in Sciences of Linguistic Mediation. Recently, her poetry book L’esploratrice dei sentimenti e dei valori umani has been published in Italy, by Aletti editor. It was presented at the Federiciano International Poetry Festival, where the keynote speaker was Alessandro Quasimodo, theatrical director, actor, author, and son of the poet Salvatore Quasimodo, Nobel Prize for literature. Her poems may be found in many international literary anthologies. She attends the masterclasses with Francesco Gazzè, songwriter; Giuseppe Anastasi, singer and songwriter; Davide Rondoni, playwright; collaborates with Mogol, lyricist and record producer.