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Ferdinando Manzo’s latest volume of poetry, The Dark Side of the Opera, is a collection of verse written in and inspired by Sydney. It is available in both English and Italian.

Here in Sydney, a siren city lying between the ocean and concrete towers, there are a lot of cafes and pubs. So many. And here too, these places guard the soul of the city, its merits and its defects.

The poems that make up the ‘Sydney Collection’ do not always speak of the physical places mentioned in the title and are almost never just descriptive of venues, parks or streets. No. Mostly, the places are containers … the cups or bottles of emotions discovered, observed, heard, lived or just imagined in those places. And often even written there, in the midst of the fretting of everyday life.

This collection pays tribute to a city that has become a second home for me. It describes the city’s soul. Its life. Even its dark side.

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