steps of tears

I first walked along this street in Rome late at night. It was quiet, dark and lonely. In the shadows a few homeless people sat not showing their faces and almost invisible blending into the night. They were not sleeping, but from the darkness they were keeping watch. I sat for a while wondering what this place might have been. As I sat one of the homeless people left the shadows and drank water from a small fountain, then returned the the shadows from where he came. The entire scene seemed profoundly sad.

The next day I came and took this picture and found that this was the place in Ancient Rome where early morning prisoners were led from their cells and executed. I imagine the relatives keeping watch through the night and saying their painful goodbyes on those ancient hard unforgiving mornings. A profoundly sad place indeed.

No comments: