Chapter #1

Amid rock faces and fairies

balze from above
Pratomagno with snow
Mona Lisa _ balze

Amid rock faces and fairies

Amid the badlands carved by the sun and by water
we skirt through pleasant hills and narrow gorges.
Natural sculptures of the same craft

that Leonardo chiseled with dedication and deft.

In the magic trails of the Rock Faces,
once frequented by barefoot princesses
we reach the Fairies’ Mouth:
a sound for summer concerts and singing.

Still among the crags, streams and torrents
we picture disturbing moviments,
at the Riguzze there’s Acqua Zolfina,
a healing metallic spring.

If Pratomagno seems faraway
stop in Galligiano village.
Monte Diana, with chestnuts and game,
is known for the Poggio alla Regina excavations.

At the top of Montrago
we still feel the presence of a lake,
the great gift of Eternity:
finding fungi in the Inferno Valley.

Chapter #2

The Soul Pass

pieve santa maria a sco_
corpus domini

If you glimpse the road from Fiesole to Rome
seek out the places of faith
and be led from the Cassia Vetus
in the church-filled road.

In Santa Maria a Scò to the west
the pilgrim finds the reborn sun
and a charming church:
awesome and emotionally charged.

Renowned the complex of Soffena
the pietra serena facade in full view,
the manor house belonging to the Ubertini
and the monastery to the Vallombrosans.

The church vaunts 1400s frescoes
saved from neglect and cement,
where the Annunciation gives us a taste
of Masaccio’s perspective!

In Castelfranco an Oratory
with a proud and famous appearance
is decorated in Florentine Baroque style
for San Filippo Neri, a child here.

Roses and broom decorate the way
a homage to the Eucharist.
On Corpus Domini the colour
breaks forth, the Lord’s triumph.

Chapter #3

The Terra Nuova

san pietro

When Florence decided to expand
Terra Nuova had to be built in Valdarno,
between cardo and decumano the plans
by Arnolfo, that magnificent architect.

The Florentine Tower rises into the heavens,
with views over the entire world.
Part of the walls remains in the rioni,
districts with striking old prisons.

In Cappella dei Bianchi
art and charity intertwine,
and in the silence of the hill and hinterland
among the chapels there’s also Campiano!

Chapter #4

The Scent of Life

Pieve Piandiscò
Palio di Faella
irises setteponti

Oil, bread and wine
have always been healthy habits
and a singular scent 
is extracted from the iris root.