Round temples

Round temples haunt me as their rectangular counterparts - Paestum, Segesta, Agrigento - never do. No end or beginning: they carry eye and thought around and out of sight, avoid conclusions: the one at Delphi, set like a grace-note on a slope below the oracle's shrine, above a silver sea of ancient olive trees; Tivoli's temple, sacred to the sibyl, poised on the chasm brink, its fluted columns circling me. My memory circles back to the potter in Apulia, decorating cups and plates by hand, no two alike. No matter how I strained to catch the instant when his brush

touched down, there was the sudden circle,

tail in mouth. No end or beginning.

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