Way back in 1977, hot on the heels of his 1976 breakout film hit, Rocky, Sylvester Stallone wrote a novel.
“The powerful first novel from the star of ‘Rocky’” thunders the back cover. “This is ROCKY’S Book. It’ll make you laugh. It’ll make you cry. It’ll make you proud…”
A cynic might posit that Stallone wrote Paradise Alley as a spec script for the 1978 film, Paradise Alley, directed by and starring Sylvester Stallone. But a close reading of Paradise Alley — a task that I recommend to no one — reveals that Sylvester Stallone’s novel is actually a repository for an altogether different sort of text.
Hidden in fragments throughout Paradise Alley is a free verse poem.