Sylvia Poggioli, a longtime Europe correspondent for National Public Radio based in Rome, is currently working on a book about her family’s transatlantic history. (May 2018)

Follow Sylvia Poggioli on Twitter: @spoggioli1.

IN THE REVIEW

NYR DAILY

Pandemic Journal, March 23–29

A running series of brief dispatches by New York Review writers documenting the coronavirus outbreak with regular updates from around the world, including Michael Greenberg in Brooklyn, Raquel Salas Rivera in San Juan, Aida Alami in Paris, Rahmane Idrissa in Niamey, Verlyn Klinkenborg in East Chatham, Tolu Ogunlesi in Lagos, Merve Emre in Oxford, Yasmine El Rashidi in Cairo, Keija Parssinen in Granville, E. Tammy Kim in Brooklyn, Adam Foulds in Toronto, Tom Bachtell in Chicago, Ivan Sršen in Zagreb, Sue Halpern in Ripton, Michael S. Roth in Middletown, Ben Mauk in Penang, Martin Filler in Southampton, Eula Biss in Evanston, Richard Ford in East Boothbay, George Weld in Brooklyn, Nilanjana Roy in New Delhi, Ursula Lindsey in Amman, Zoë Schlanger in Brooklyn, Dominique Eddé in Beirut, Lucy McKeon in Brooklyn, Yiyun Li in Princeton, Caitlin L. Chandler in Berlin, Nick Laird in Kerhonkson, Alma Guillermoprieto in Bogotá, Lucy Jakub in Northampton, Rachael Bedard in Brooklyn, Hari Kunzru in Brooklyn, Minae Mizumura in Tokyo, Jenny Uglow in Keswick, Sylvia Poggioli in Rome, and more.

How My Father Made Landfall

The author’s parents, Renata and Renato Poggioli, in the mid-1940s

I’d always known my father’s papers contained a trove of letters from some of the big names in twentieth-century literature. But it wasn’t until I finally began going through my father’s papers one by one that I discovered the breadth and richness of his literary world, his passion and political engagement. Then, one day last spring, I found two yellowing, handwritten sheets of paper among the mostly typewritten letters: one was a note, the other contained verses. At the bottom of each was the clear signature of W.H. Auden.