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Angela Ball

Grottoes and Their Uses


“. . . grottoes that were artificial had, to begin with, severely practical purposes: like the
marvelous vaults the Romans built as part of hydraulic projects.” – Susan Sontag

Grottoes are human-made concavities.

My first grotto:
A roadside niche
Containing a statuette of the Virgin
Dressed in gold
And crowned with blue lights.

The first luxury hotel for Black Americans,
In Washington, DC, cost over
$140,000.00 and
Boasted a grotto
And ballroom.

Public restrooms
Are exceptionally plain
Grottoes, but intercourse
Sometimes makes up for that.

When people write things on walls
They are creating a grotto.

Every church needs a grotto
As its id.

The center of Rome is one enormous grotto,
As is the Mall of America.  The Middle Ages
Are sometimes considered a grotto: this may
Or may not be correct.

When a chef piles foodstuffs on top
Of each other, she makes it possible
To eat a grotto—which you can also do
If you have one of those chocolate eggs
Decorated inside
With a separate reality.

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