In The Gravel At San Abbondio Cemetery by Gary Singh

In The Gravel At San Abbondio Cemetery

Gary Singh

chilly October breeze
in Lugano, Switzerland
carries a lake of serene blue
between the shapely peaks;

behind the train station, the bus
fills with locals and a traveler
with Hermann Hesse in his jacket;

the vehicle eases up a hill,
snaking a path to a village
of cobblestones and tiled
roofs that redirect the drizzle;

through a town square the traveler
walks into a cafe filled with books
and war stories in many tongues;

nearby, the stone facade of
Casa Camuzzi beckons the
traveler to mirror the life of
an old German author;

it is here, after wandering far from
home, that Hesse harmonized
inner conflicts—on pages,
in gardens, on watercolor paper;

but now, like those Chinese
hermits gone missing, Hesse is not
around to greet anyone in person;

instead, his photos, bookshelf,
spectacles and satchels of notes
remain behind polished glass;

on a table, his old typewriter meditates—
the very machine from which
the Great Game emerged;

brochures then lead the traveler
to where Hesse lies buried, in
a cemetery, just past a village
where he wandered and painted;

it is there, in the gravel, that the traveler
speaks to a gravestone: “For you, old
man, I will keep writing. Just show
me how to pay the bills.”

About the Author

Gary Singh is an award-winning travel journalist with a music degree who publishes poetry, paints and exhibits photographs. As a scribe, he’s published nearly 1000 works including newspaper columns, travel essays, art and music criticism, profiles, business journalism, lifestyle articles, poetry and short fiction. His poems have been published in The Pedestal Magazine, Dirty Chai, Maudlin House and more. For 500 straight weeks, his newspaper columns have appeared in Metro, the alternative weekly paper of San Jose and Silicon Valley. Currently, he is the author of The San Jose Earthquakes: A Seismic Soccer Legacy (The History Press, 2015).