We’re here again where I was born,
our favorite city, where we
walk on cobblestones as the Notre Dame
wavers upside-down in the green waters.
A Bateau Mouche glides past the banks of the Seine,
under the sculpted bridge of long vanished legends,
and on the way we buy two city sketches,
impossibly red trees their only spot of color.
We stop at a bistro for déjeuner. While I study the menu
you slip away and pay a street musician
to serenade me with an Edith Piaf song.
We smile at the cliché but La Vie En Rose reels us in.
We dart in the drizzle to the Métro,
catch “C’est Formidable” at the Pigalle.
As your hand reaches for mine, you knock over
a crystal glass, but I don’t mind
the splash on my stole. It’s a baptism
of sorts, by verre de vin rouge.
Even later, we sit in the Sainte-Chapelle cathedral,
its stained glass windows opening us to the sky.
Notes of ancient reeds and organ pipes
hold us hostage until the last note is played.
Soon we find ourselves in Île Saint-Louis for Bertillion’s glaces.
Chocolate Blanc duels pistache for our taste buds. Chocolat wins.
Walking back through almost empty streets,
we hear a humming lullaby. Paris belongs to us.
Borrowed from evening’s concert, the dark rose
of your kiss topples me further into the night.
We lean on Pont Marie and wonder how copper sneaks
beneath the edge of dawn, so cleverly.
Glenview, IL USA.
Donated to Red Cross