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Cagli’s Heart Song

What a symphony of excitement and serenity! It’s 5:56 late Sunday afternoon at the Piazza Giacomo Mattiotti- the heartbeat of Cagli, a small city in the Marque region of southern Italy. The unavoidable yet pleasant gravitational pull of the Piazza unites the community. A time and space favored by all, indiscriminate of age or gender.

The sweet song of Italian tongue sung by a chorus of men and women can be heard all around. Come…chee…chay…dio sing the young ladies on the patio at Caffe del Commercio. Ques…ques…ques, oh benne sing the older gentlemen that line the wall of Cittia di Cagli sharing stories and words of wisdom. Ini…ona…benne…oo sing the couples that stop mid gait at the lamp post to greet with hug and kiss and catch up on recent times past. Each face is illuminated with a smile that stretches from pole to pole.
It’s easy to become entranced by the mood as gelatos of love and drinks of spirit seem to sustain the community.

The fountain at the center gives life as the water is recylced; the molecules spring up and flow downward, spring up and flow downward hitting the pool below creating a visually audible massage. A young child no more than three years runs around the many cars surrounding the fountain weaving in and out laughing and jumping at intervals with glee. He stops suddenly noticing an unsual face in the crowd. He smiles and begins to play peak-a-boo with the stranger ducking back and forth from behind the nearby lamp post.

The symphony continues despite the numerous cars and motorcyclists that enter the Piazza from all directions roaring and revving taking their place in this space and time. Many pass through just to be a part of this moment if only just for the seconds it takes to circle the square. They leave their mark as fumes of burned fuel continue to sit in the air. A polizia di Italia paces the square looking left to right with stern face and arms straight at his sides as if waiting for an invitation for action. No one seems to notice him or mind that he’s there; he eventually invites himself into a conversation with a group of men nearby.

The sun is slowly slipping away while the sweet sound of Italian tongue grows louder and louder, si…benne…si! The bell at the top of Cittia di Cagli has chimed three times now marking each measure of Cagli’s heart song. Si benne,…all….is…well…in Cagli.

Monica Jennings
6/28/09


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