Le baiser de l’hôtel de ville
Photographer : Robert Doisneau
someday.. to fully live in this picture.
I’ll pin you down like a butterfly—
and I know, I’ve seen
that this is a land of men and monsters.
I bake bread on Saturdays,
not out of any sense of feminine domesticity,
wife to the madman, maid on the stairs—
but passing the time more like
while weeding the gardens,
those overgrown with bull thistle and thorn apples,
that rise up and flourish in my mind.
Sub-merciful, in the green waters
count them one, two, three
it’s a better play in technicolor so
you’ll need a tulip in your lapel,
a dozen blueberry muffins
and a mourning bouquet—
oh I hate the sad endings,
how I hate the sad endings…
crave sugar cubes in my tea,
the merry breakfast
after a lonely midnight!
cries his heart with tears and fissures—
no more loneliness for thee.
As We Are
The kestrel fights off songbirds
before eating them, so that’s struggle,
I guess—that’s divine, habit-forming
intervention, with invitations from
the queen herself, I dressed in plum and
my sister wore red scarlet,
our nod to varying shades of blood, as we are
descended from middle-class farmers
and proper French ladies—
unfit for much more than
stage and effect.
Batten down the hatches
and the shutters—
flutter on the camera
with a misty, maudlin landscape backdrop
of oh spacious skies
and amber waves,
drip, drip, dripping down
and running (huffing and puffing) off
a watercolor spout
to wash the sunshine on the palette out.
Riddled With Imperfections
Just try to get sunshine in a box,
tricky bastard just won’t fit—
neither I, having seen something
of the other side, find the days of the week
(the uneven hours and minutes they contain)
hang off my upturned wrists
like gaudy, drugstore jewelry.
They saddle you with misery
before you take your first step—
Disney films are the great deception,
epiphanies are for the novel hero,
literary giants can squash you flat,
make you suffer over things that never happened
and he’s always at your doorstep
smoking cigarettes (the cure for cancer is inevitably
death) but just step over him and
carry on, as you were,
don’t mind us, don’t worry your pretty head!
I’ll make him sweep the ashes.