Allegory of Evil in Italy

A
The Visconti put you on their flag: a snake
devouring a child, or are you throwing up a man
feet first? Some snakes hunt frogs, some freedom of will.
There’s good in you: a man can count years on your skin.
Generously, you mother and father a stolen boy,
to the chosen you offer your cake of figs.
A goiter on my neck, you lick my ear with lies,
yet I must listen, smile and kiss your cheek
or you may swallow the child completely. In Milan
there is a triptych, the throned Virgin in glory,
placed on the marble below, a dead naked man
and a giant dead frog of human scale on its back.
There’s hope! My eyes look into the top of my head
at the wreath of snakes that sometimes crowns me.
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