I enjoyed Cyndi Amato’s Maine Voices column (Feb. 12). One of the writers who cleverly welcomed the Italian immigrants in the early 1900s was T.A. Daly (1871-1948).

The late 1800s and the early 1900s was a period of substantial Italian immigration. The Irish, because of the famine, had generally preceded the Italians, and had secured political power and the better jobs – bosses, firemen, policemen, etc. The Italians dug ditches, worked stone, sold peanuts, etc., had trouble with the language and suffered the discrimination of most recent immigrants.

T.A. Daly noticed this and with feeling and talent wove it into his many poems, cleverly avoiding the unpleasant aftertaste of much literature with a dialect or ethnic twist. The poetry of T.A. Daly was once widely read, but now, unfortunately, is largely forgotten.

I urge everyone to read at least some of his poems, for thinking, like: “Two ‘Mericana Men” and “Da Sweeta Soil”; for fun, like “Mia Carlotta” and “Georgio Washington”; and for feeling, like “Da Leetla Boy.”

Frederick Gralenski

Pembroke