The Steps were a lolling minced rainbow of artist’s models, and there were also the flowersellers. The church bell sang once, and in some strange way it embraced the scene. John saw why, and his heart jumped. The whirring fragments of sound that splintered off from the bell’s main note were those colours… Colours whirred or whirled into God’s white and away and back again. What did God have to do with anything? No, here in Rome you could not say that. There was room for Apollo and Venus and still some for God.

– Anthony Burgess. ABBA ABBA, 1977


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