EXILE – a poem in honor of France

 

EXILE

 

despite the impact of Cézanne

upon the poet

Rilke considered himself

“exiled to the Seine”

 

I am exiled here

under a Caligula governor

to whom ‘my’ nature is enemy

while the new Hitler secures

nomination by the former

Grand Old Party

 

as every World War II book

recounts the rise of fascism

all too recognizable

on every side

in what used to be

our country

 

exile ME to the Seine!

I’ll start at that point of rockiness

where old fishermen gather new fish

beneath the venerable willows

— silence of shadiness

broken only by riverine ripples

 

nearby dark barges

— sleek and gleaming —

–quaint names glowing

at their prows–

evoke other lifetimes

hint of vagabondage

brigandry, while

geraniums and laundry

ripple brightly at their sterns

 

let me become habitué

of the Seine’s Left Bank

savoring anew the courtly lunch

at that dark and storied restaurant

upon the Quai Voltaire

 

followed by long studious strolls

among des bouquinistes

whether or not I buy

I’ll stroke venerable bindings

 

thinking in almost-French

Allons-y, à la Ste. Chapelle”…

“et, après ca, le pèlerinage”

to the grim fortress where

Marie Antoinette

whiled last hours

playing chess

 

awash in sombreness

I’ll seek “une glace

at ice cream’s mecca

upon Isle St. Louis

— seeming a venerable boat

at anchor

upon the dimpling Seine

 

wrinkling and whispering,

the river will announce

“Caroline, bienvenue.”

 

CAROLYN FOOTE EDELMANN

in mourning with France

for the tragedy of Nice

in the summer of 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

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NEW POEM: BEACH PLUMS

Sleeping Fox  Island Beach April 2016

“To Sleep, Perchance to Dream” — Sleeping Fox Among the Beach Plums

For some reason, my poetry Muse has returned lately.

I could well credit my recent reading of Rilke, whose previously unpublished works I ‘devoured’ in April, so-called Poetry Month.  As if one can consign an art or a race to a month!

Here is one of the new collection, some of which you know because you saw this image not too long ago in NJWILDBEAUTY.

Do remember that we would not have WILD BEAUTY in NJ without serious, steady, even increasing preservation of open land.

And enjoy this glimpse into the Carolyn who was poet first and foremost, before preservation took center stage.

 

BEACH PLUMS

 

something about the beach plums

–past their prime

though today is merely May

 

something about their branches

–looking seared

 

I want to find this meagreness of blossoms

proof of early pollination

 

a few short weeks ago

beneath these beach plums

I came upon the slumb’ring fox

 

in full daylight

such peacefulness of wild

in the wild

 

sleek chin

upon elegant

black paws

 

I envied that fox

its trust

finding shelter

deep in plum twigs

not yet blossom-shrouded

 

and now, so soon

all blooms felled

 

no shelter for wingèd

nor four-leggèd

 

should I return in autumn

would absences

have been transformed

to fruit?

 

CAROLYN FOOTE EDELMANN

May, 2016