Monday, April 4, 2011

Inside An Old Book of French Poems

It is bunch of grapes from La Crau,
leaves and all, a peasant's offering.
Frederic Mistral

Part of me
lingers here,
a garment of loose script
on the fly leaf

hoping my unhemmed
draft will stray
into language
worthy of your tongue.

This book has been stitched
by hand, its paper
stiff but your voice
groomed with a typeface
called Garamond

sounding almost
like a Bohemian dance
from the South.

Your lines often sing
of an ocean wind, shore birds
and bell towers looming
over vineyards ripe
with black grapes, a maiden's love
for the basket maker.

Yet , that silence inbetween
tells me you are there
listening to songs outside
your valley beyond
the stone fortress
of Saintes-Maries-de-la Mer.

And maybe, you hear mine --
a girl tattered
in her own verse
struggling to show
some talent, gain closer
access to you.

So carefully, I thumb
through all these pages,
your breath fanned
in the lamplight -- emitting
a faint blend
of tobacco and dust.


The lovely painting is called " The Young Reader revisited" or "La Jeune Liseuse revisitee" by French artist, Marie-France Riviere. More of her lovely work can be seen here --

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