And Then He Spoke of Aeschylus

And Then He Spoke of Aeschylus (2017) – Acrylic on wood. Artwork and text copyright Danny Grosso

The zealous counsel

who prosecuted

his father’s associates

acted as if he knew

no better

as he ruthlessly pursued

ruthlessness as an end

from hearing tables

then campaign offices

from convention halls

then hotel rooms

from the Department of Justice

then a carpet bag.


But somewhere

in there

before the carpet bag

something happened

that terrible Friday

that scrambled the process

scattered the will

scored the heart

changed everything inside

red divison to

blue harmony

Machiavelli to



On a trip to Mt. Kennedy he saw

his own insignificance

on a trip to Appalachia he saw

his own ineffectualness

on a trip to Arlington he cried



Two brothers lost now

the last a real blow

a part of himself


for what – if not what’s


the future

what Jack always spoke about

so hopefully

so gracefully

so heartbreaking



In the blue of the mornings and evenings

ruthlessness ebbs with the tide

washing away with each passing wave.

You can hear it in his voice

in each oration until the very end

a search for beneficient consensus

in which the predator

seeks the pardon

of his former prey.


A ship lost at sea has

a longer way home

than the ship working

the ferry line.

How much a man changes has

a lot to do

with where he’s placed himself

when the changing begins.


Danny Grosso



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