Margherita Sarfatti— erudite Jewish paramour,
helped Mussolini write a fascist manifesto.
He had an enormous appetite,
wanting to make the darkness
of his time new again, but got lost
in delusions about the grandeur of Rome.
Her brilliant intellect
and aesthetic sensibility
made him look like a hairy ape
chasing for stars he could never reach.
Margherita finally gave up
trying to convince him—
the worst evil only happens
by those who think they know
what they are doing.
Always the bully,
thrown out of school as a kid
for stabbing a classmate,
Mussolini forged ahead
like a blind matador,
partnering with Hitler
and Franco, always reserving
a Christian chair for the Pope.
Margherita had to run for her life.
Ezra Pound thrived on anti-semitism
and volunteered to help Mussolini
until he was locked away for treason.
Mussolini left screaming ghosts in his wake,
and sloshes of blood on his fat peasant hands.