that reign in their shelter just inside the Aurelian walls— walls as continuous ancient plot of what Ersela calls "the infrastructure of paranoia" in a discussion of U.S. planning, over chard soup—

so as we were saying, on the other side of an ad-hoc hairdressing outfit that unfurls on the benches that line the walls,

cats glorious in marginality as the "non-Catholic foreigners" memorialized here, who having found themselves inhabitants of Rome, chose to rest in the shadow of the Pyramid—in the company of "one whose name was writ in water"—

anxious chest in anticipation of seeing for the first time, after ten years of working through another's language, this absence I can't show due to the law, laws of privacy I'm not sure the poet would condone—

and double, triplechecking through the foreign names & scripts, through Syrians, Japanese, Greek, above all the sunseeking English,

"But the most touching element of all is the appeal of the pious English inscriptions among all these Roman memories; touching because of their universal expression of that trouble within trouble, misfortune in a foreign land." —Henry James, Italian Hours

& finding the place, hedge full of flowerless green in Roman winter, just where a silent commotion of cats enweave themselves—

& given that this is more Romantic park than functional yard with blooms for sale, leaving where the hollow tube full of water rises, foraged pink camellias and orange clumps from environing trees,

in the shade of a dwarf pomegranate that faces the tablet in a hedged-in body-sized garden ("in my figurate mind"), momentarily fallow.