Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Lady Ferlinghetti Met At A Bistro Table In San Francisco


One grand boulevard with trees
one grand  café  in sun....
                                    Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Larry may have called her
Monet's lily floating in  time
                 because she wore an eyelet blouse
with  hair crimped and hanging
over its collar
like willow shade back-lit by the sun.
Nothing Wi-Fi about her. The cloud
was summer lace,
                             or a mind storing
other  lives she had lived
in old world cities
and sent home creased
on onion skin.
                      The envelope
stamped with bird postage
and sealed with her saliva. Sea water
                 rolled off the tongue
                        that had canto'd
the pines of  Rome, the spires of Prague, the green
                       crossing at Giverny.

 I have always loved two poems by Ferlinghetti, "Monet's Water Lilies Shuddeingr" and  "Constantly Risking Absurdity about  The  hire wire performer who tries to keep his balance just like the poet who must keep his or hers performing their craft  The first has alluded its way into the description of the woman sitting at the café table. But what really struck or inspired me was an interview Ferlinghetti recently gave to PBS discussing his view of poetry and the changing scene in San Francisco. He laments how hi tech has come in rudely and made the artistic city a place of rich real estate and almost non-caring residents. I also thought of how he might portray/interact with/define a woman poet who is sitting there like a figment/ghost from another era imbued with its Bohemian grace and wanderlust.


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