DANCING WITH MARIA'S GHOST by Alessandro Manzetti
The line between love and obsession is thin—thinner when love looks like madness, and perhaps thinnest when the object of that love is no longer living. These dark and lyrical poems detail the desire and descent of a man who falls in love with the impossible: the ghost of the great coloratura soprano, Maria Callas. Once dubbed the ‘ultimate diva’, the tumult of this tragic beauty beckons to him from the underworld, and in shades of exquisite darkness she lures him deeper into sweet insanity and toward his own gorgeous destruction.
Greek islands, Roman ruins, Parisian apartments. A quiet room in the chaos of war-ravaged Europe. On the stage, through the body, in the body that is a stage—these settings are the backdrop of this cursed romance. Through drama, theatre, the ache of broken genius and the strength of timeless art, the poems in this collection celebrate the memory of a beloved icon, and serenade the victims of doomed love.
Cover art by Pierluigi Abbondanza, interior illustrations by Barbara Monacelli
“Alessandro Manzetti’s exquisite poems are séance arias of an adoring, mourning heart. Like fated souls, he and Maria Callas are a mystic duet; unveered by time.”
–Richard Christian Matheson
"Manzetti trips the dark fantastic with the ghost of Maria Callas in this collection, spinning the reader on the edges of ephemeral shadows with his masterful poetry. This mesmerizing book ends with a section of bonus uncollected verse that opens with a fantastic piece he wrote with Joe Lansdale."
–Linda D. Addison
"A darkly erotic ode to self-destruction and obsessive desire, Alessandro Manzetti’s “Dancing with Maria’s Ghost” pulls the reader into a world of madness and longing where “the strawberries of psychosis” evoked by the dead diva Maria Callas lure the narrator ever deeper into the void. From the yacht Skorpios, where Aristotle Onassis rendez-voused with the famed soprano, to stages across Europe where Callas seduced the world with her portrayals of Violetta, Salome, Manon Lescaut, and so many others, Manzetti’s poetry gives new and darker dimensions to the desire that lures the lover ever closer to the void. A collection of imagery both stunning and seductive, where oblivion calls as relentlessly as passion."
"A gorgeous, heartstopping collection with breathtaking and devastating language. An unforgettable experience and a truly stunning homage to the iconic Maria Callas, this book is highly recommended."