les jours tristes
and her tongue unmouthed.
ah, that golden city pressed between olive groves and
her tiny eyes like orbs to keep things in-
small insects, rue de clare almond mornings, snapshots of children, dogs and coloring books,
flowered asylums and trickling easles, fruit prisms.
the soup helped, but the warmth was already in her belly.
every cockeyed hope bounced off the walls of the great cathedral
open-eyed, silent sleeping in the inky shadows of the flickering seine.
headstrong gargoyles, the bobbing nightboat, the romantics- all blameless voyeurs
as she pissed under the bridge.
she collected kiss crumbs, floating petals from the lips of lovers.
she placed them on her own while dreaming
that one day she'd grow wings.
time is horsehair on a stick
and it paints limestone whiter.
a soft tiptoe, a quick inhalation and the snuff into her own palm
fingertips grazing the small century rainwater tunnels in roman bricks
tracing the runoff with footfall to the edge of the river stopping once to notice
green forbidden bottles that might become a case for the thoughts she knew were hers.
chasing visions, she placed her whole body in his footstep.
the bridge was bombed and the acrylic too would crack and flake away.
she wished to make snowangels in the courtyard but all the cats were looking.
she photographed herself instead and took the picture home.
in her imagination attendants and patients hurried past the man with the red littered beard-
seeing was second because feeling's first.
she stood with her back to aurora,
her black skirt dragged the earth so she slept beside it.
waking dreams mean still sleep
and dawn made her doubt the difference.