Day Ten: Hot and full and strong and dead

Today we go to Rome as every month or so to visit amore’s father. Both are true Romans. Imagine how that must be.

Challenge 10: “Today, I’d like to challenge you to write a poem that starts from a regional phrase, particularly one to describe a weather phenomenon.  … Our prompt for the day (optional, as always), is also rooted in dialect and regional phrasing.” 

In Rome

“Sto’ carda,” I sigh,
and indicate
with a little fluttering gesture
before my mouth
that the immense heat
is threatening to blow me to pieces.

“Sto’ colma,” I sigh,
and indicate
with my hands over my tummy
that I cannot possibly have
another mouthful,
no matter how delicious.

“Sto’ Franco forte,”
says amore’s father 
and flexes his muscles 
and we all laugh
because this is his name
and he is strong.

Amore looks at me
with something like pride
and laughs:
“Mortacci tua!
Spoken like a vera romana!”

But I know
that I’ll only be a true Roman
when I can say “Mortacci tua”
and get away with it.

Sto’ carda = I’m hot 
+ Stoccarda = Stuttgart (German city)
Sto’ colma = I’m full 
+ Stoccolma = Stockholm (Swedish city)
Franco forte = Strong Frank 
+ Francoforte = Frankfurt (German city)
Mortacci tua = Your dead people 
You need to be Roman to get it. Or watch this video.
(Oh, a New Yorker might say: "Get out of here!")

In the photo part, some hints as to who is really ruling Rome and some of its dead in images from last December, in case you’ve had enough of this spring (hehe).

For Day 10 of NaPoWriMo



  1. Well this post was a delight! Probably my favorite poem of yours during the Na…hows-it-spelled-month. My imagination started playing Asterix stories already when you said ”Both are true Romans. Imagine how that must be.” Imagine that they are actual ancestors of Romans! Maybe their great-great-great-grandparents wandered the streets of Rome back in its ancient days! Maybe they met Julius Cesar. Maybe they helped build the Colosseum. Maybe they… who knows what? As for the poem, so cool. I could see you right there. In Rome

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank youuuu, SMSW!! ❤ I often feel that they are direct descendants. 😀 Blood, sweat and tears are in the air! As for the poems for NaPoWriMo – sometimes I feel they are a bit forced because I juggle prompts and other challenges and photos and try to wrap it up each day in the best way and hope for the best. :p I'm really glad that you like this one.

      Oh, amore was only in the Colosseum once, for work. 😀 He says there are only stones in there. Hahhah.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know if there, but for sure there is a ghost, female, walking on the bridge with her own head under her arm. Every year on the same day. Let me see when: Beatrice Cenci (1577-99). She is said to appear on the night between September 10 and 11, along the bridge to Sant’Angelo Castle.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love your poem. Now I need to go back and look at the video. I’ll be in Rome—starting off spot for a cruise–in August. If I only have time to see one thing, what do you suggest? I’ve never been there before..That head of John the Baptist.. wow.. I wonder why the binding? Did you know I live in San Juan Cosala? John the Baptist is the town’s patron saint…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Judy! I didn’t know about your patron saint and I don’t know anything about this head. Oh, you’re coming over, if only for one day! I’ll be in Slovenia in August though. Rome in summer can be a bit hellish. I don’t think you’ll walk around much in the heat (oh, but you’re used to it!). If you don’t hate cemeteries, I’d recommend going to the Non-Catholic Cemetery where a couple of famous British poets are buried. You’ll see. It’s so calm and fresh there, a proper oasis.


      1. I actually hate heat. I live in a very temperate climate. I do, however, love cemeteries..and my sister is also an English major so perhaps she’d put up with visiting a British poet’s grave better than my husband did visiting Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris. Thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehhe. I think I’ve come up with the best New York translation: Get out of here!! It can mean so many things and be used in so many contexts. 😉 But basically it’s an exclamation of surprise. Or anger. Or admiration. You know, anything at all. 😀


      1. Everything I read about it said it was the biggest insult and should not be used, but in the video it seemed always to be said affectionately and in surprise. A lot like the word f…. I guess, and different when used with a friend. There are those phrases in spanish as well.. used often by mexicans but best not used by foreigners!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh I did enjoy reading this! So descriptive, I can see it in my head as I read the words – and the pictures are beautiful (I love that statue head).

    Liked by 1 person

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