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Milan: Shadows upside-down

Beatrice Mancini

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Milan is upside down. Above the air, below the water. Swift and gray it flows in the aisles of ground, underneath the steps of a thousand people that hurry, when just listening would be enough. At times it rests, tired of the long, dark and unsure distances. Other times, its indomitable nature floods in from a leak of light, in a roar of screams and crystals.
It's a subtle stretch, made of asphalt, the border between the over and the underworld. It's enough to break apart, with convenience, two opposite and parallel worlds. Somebody doesn't want to see. But the dark hides, it doesn't delete.
So the little men explore, they move with respect in the ancient bowels of the city. They can wait for time to drip along the escapes of old blackened bricks. They know that another measure rules down there.
They feel like small glow-worms that twirl around a soggy and rainy wood. They stop under the vaults without stars, built by a-thousand-old hands. They penetrate in the depths of a silence that has always existed. They wear big masks, though they are not actors. They don't dominate the scene, but they are conquered by it. They split the thick and heavy air, condensed in the tunnels of the huge artificial labyrinth. They proceed catious and timorous of the big rat's wave loaded with poison. They, who for many things don't own an antidote other than passion.
They have a tiring breath, their eyes careful not to lose any details. The heat chokes them and the dead liquids don't offer them a mirror in which to look for comfort.
Shadows of lights projected on the dark and shiny walls are the background from wich their silhouettes slide away, one after another. They're little pathfinders for a big undertaking. Maybe they are looking for a new opening, a hidden breach from which to observe once more the world down there. Maybe they understand are guests only at the end of a visit that has lasted too much. Or maybe, more simply, they're only thirsty of the sun that shines up there.

(text of Elena P. Melodia, writer)

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