A Sonnet to Vatican City

This is part of a series called ‘A sonnet to the world’, which I have been working on. You can read about the project here. The idea is to write a 14-line Shakespearean Sonnet for every country I visit (and hopefully and eventually, the whole world). And this one is for Vatican City.

The Bishop of Rome was definitely a draw;

But there were more ways that the Vatican could woo.

In the centre of Bernini’s piazza, the fountain of Maderno

And the solitary statue of St. Pietro were just a few.


Even the hands of Michelangelo had grazed

The Corinthian columns that rose up in the air.

And as hard as I could try, my eyes still chased

the variegated swiss guard. And the basilica they care.


The forlorn witness watched from above – noncommittally.

Probably agape at the vast number of people that had flocked

To listen to an Argentinian speak in the heart of Italy.

In a voice that grew more soothing as he talked.


Blessed was the air here, and countless sins forgiven.

And all this even before the Angelus address was given.

Poet’s notes

  1. The Vatican city is the smallest state in the world – both by size and population. So, I hope I can be forgiven for spending only a day there. But I had chosen the best day possible: Sunday, when Pope Francis of Argentina (also the Bishop of Rome) gave his Angelus address.
  2. Much of St. Peter’s square has been designed by great names, like Bernini, Maderno and even Michelangelo.
  3. ‘The witness’ is the name of the giant obelisk at the middle of the St. Peter’s square.
  4. The Swiss Guard are the colourful pontifical guard.

Follow my travels on Facebook and on instagram, for more updates and travel photography.
To know more about me, visit this page



About Abhi Surendran

Abhi quit his corporate job, and decided to immerse himself in travels, photography, occasional periods of bankruptcy, and copious amounts of insanity. He is currently working on a book of his experiences, and a dream road trip through South Asia. Both in a haphazard fashion. He blogs at Iamnothome and you can also catch him at times on Facebook and twitter.

Leave a Reply