Almanac Poetry: Michelangelo Antonioni’s ‘Deserto Rosso’





Michelangelo Antonioni’s ‘Deserto Rosso’


the green of the grass is much greener
than it actually would be


the red of her thick winter coat
as she walks across the verdant field
is impossibly red,
contrasting with the blondeness of her hair


she paints her room a different colour
each time she has a change of mood
and the same mood never happens twice


her upper-middle class friends
at their weekend bungalow
try aphrodisiacs and talk about sex,
displaying more sophistication
than could be considered credible


no, this is not real life
– this is a cinematic world


as I watch the screen,
I can almost hear the clicking
as the teeth of the sprockets move the film
through the projector


I sense blazing light
passing through celluloid
and wonder why it does not burn,
blacken and curl the print


and Monica Vitti
never looked lovelier …



(Acknowledgement; first published in Orpheus in the Undershirt, my third poetry collection, Ginninderra Press, 2018.)




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Kevin Densley is a graduate of both Deakin University and The University of Melbourne. He has taught writing and literature in numerous Victorian universities and TAFES. He is a poet and writer-in-general. His fifth book-length poetry collection, Please Feed the Macaws ... I'm Feeling Too Indolent, was published in late 2023 by Ginninderra Press. He is also the co-author of ten play collections for young people, as well as a multi Green Room Award nominated play, Last Chance Gas, which was published by Currency Press. Other writing includes screenplays for educational films.

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