The life of Giuseppe Ungaretti in Friuli Venezia Giulia

There are many novelists and characters who have left a mark in the history of literature and beyond, and who drawn inspiration for their works from the cultural heritage of Friuli Venezia Giulia: Pier Paolo Pasolini, Ippolito Nievo and Giuseppe Ungaretti, to name just three.

I have often wondered what caused the spark igniting this love for the region and I am finding an answer also thanks in part to the enquiries and meetings offered by Pordenonelegge.

The writings of soldiers at the Ungaretti Park

The land with its colours, scents and landscapes, the history of the region, the people who live there, have all contributed from time to time to rendering unforgettable the experience of those who come here from further afield. Thus, great and minor authors who have tasted the beauty of Friuli Venezia Giulia have been deeply impressed and won over by it, deciding to locate their stories here or to pay homage to the region in their writings. This is the narrative of our Friuli Venezia Giulia through the words of ‘foreigners’, which create a double link between an experience lived and experience demonstrated.

Recently, Pordenonelegge.it has led a group of over sixty people to discover the areas in which the poet-soldier Giuseppe Ungaretti fought during the First World War. It was on this occasion that he wrote his first and powerful poetic work, Il Porto Sepolto, almost entirely under enemy fire on Mount San Michele, near Sagrado.

Moreover, we should not forget that at Santa Maria la Longa, Ungaretti wrote Mattina, a poem which, with its few but intense words “M’illumino di immenso” (‘Immensity fills me with light’), profoundly renewed Italian poetry of the twentieth century.

An old-established Friulian distillery

The day the Foundation proposed exploring the life of the forerunner of hermetics begins amid the vapours of the alembics in a historic Friulian distillery. It continues with the local products in a splendid Sagrado farm, before plunging into history with a visit to the Parco Ungaretti.

It was this “demonstrated experience” to make me fully understand the “lived experience”. I recommend this itinerary to everyone for its beauty, but also to know better a writer who wrote subtle and delicate thoughts for posterity at a time when his heart was in Friuli Venezia Giulia.

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