See Naples and Die|Allan Lake|Poetry

Catchy slogan, that one. Caught me.

I had thought death a mere metaphor

or, at worst, result of botched interaction

with local mafia but, upon arrival in that

beautiful and infamous southern Italian city,

developed a small cough.


I coughed in the B&B when I should

have slept, coughed over cornetti and

morning espresso, coughed walking up

ancient stone steps to historic centre,

coughed on the bus along postcard

coastline, cough-coughed at convent

where dignified silence is expected

and eventually coughed my way

to Emergency Department where

I was prevented from kicking

a truly odd metaphor with anti-

(bucket) biotics. Not Covid-19;

Coffin avoided.


I shall not forget or forgive you, Naples –

like Calabrian Mafia I hold grudges.

Yours was almost a cough to die for

but, to be fair, you did give fair warning.



Originally from Saskatchewan, Allan Lake has lived in Vancouver, Cape Breton I., Ibiza, Tasmania,

& Melbourne. Poetry Collection: Sand in the Sole (Xlibris, 2014). Lake won Lost Tower Publications

(UK) Comp 2017 & Melbourne Spoken Word Poetry Fest/The Dan 2018.

Won publication NewPhilosopher #29, 2020. Chapbook (Ginninderra Press 2020) My Photos of Sicily.

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2 Responses to “See Naples and Die|Allan Lake|Poetry”

Author's gravatar

An enthralling drift. Good poem

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