“Imperial City” by Richie Hofmann
From the outset I hated the city of my ancestors.
I was fearful I’d be put in the dungeon below
the cathedral. The best example of the Romanesque
a guide was saying in German in English in French
where are buried eight German kings four queens
twenty-three bishops four Holy Roman Emperors
all of whom used this bishopric on the river as the seat
of the kingdom. On the old gate at one end a clock
told an ancient form of time. I sulked along behind
my parents as the guide gave facts about the war
with the Saracens about the place where the Jews bathed
about the child like me whose father the Peaceful
having already produced an heir by his first marriage
could marry for love.