Paris Stories: Two by Diana Rosen

Paris Stories: Twoby Diana Rosen On our way to somewhere else, noon timeGregorian chants draw us into Notre Dameanother mystical moment possible only whenyou leave the guidebook in your hotel room.We light candles, “just in case,” then visitMémorial des Martyrs de la Déportationthe cryptically named homage to 200,000martyrs deported from Vichy Franceto the Camps ofContinue reading “Paris Stories: Two by Diana Rosen”

French Postcards by Andrena Zawinski

French Postcards by Andrena Zawinski 1. This picture is for you of the café where I rested on the long walk from Tour Eiffel to Notre Dame, and here is another of the Louvre, with a view from the other side of the river. Tonight, nibbling at the last of the boulanger’s stiff baguette andContinue reading “French Postcards by Andrena Zawinski”

Paris Stories: One by Diana Rosen

Paris Stories: One by Diana Rosen On the lush green slope to the side of Cimetière du Père-Lachaise where the crumbling concrete tombstones of Molière, Colette, Hugo rest, I find myself seriously Lost, wave down a solitary figure to whom I plead, “Sortie, s’il vous plaît, sortie,” cobbled from the words for Please (a mustContinue reading “Paris Stories: One by Diana Rosen”

January in Paris by Billy Collins

January in Paris by Billy Collins A poem is never finished, only abandoned. —Paul Valéry That winter I had nothing to do but tend the kettle in my shuttered room on the top floor of a pensione near a cemetery, but I would sometimes descend the stairs, unlock my bicycle, and pedal along the coldContinue reading “January in Paris by Billy Collins”

A Champs-Élysées Stroll, 1980 by Jeanie Greenfelder

A Champs-Élysées Stroll, 1980by Jeanie Greenfelder On a torrid day, traffic and tourists sweatand we trudge toward Café Ladurée.I’m determined to taste the famed macaronsmy friend raved about.  My husband sights a nearby brasserieand wants to skip the Café Ladureé,souring my Paris magic.I hurl vintage hurts at him:You don’t love me. You never loved me.HisContinue reading “A Champs-Élysées Stroll, 1980 by Jeanie Greenfelder”

Père Lachaise by Jennifer Lagier

Père Lachaiseby Jennifer Lagier Our guide, Jean-Jacques,tells us stories,reads inscriptionson mausoleums.Marks a map as Iexplore a city of deathwith expatriate friends.We pass grandiose memorials.Angels and antichrists decomposebeside housewives and saints.Fading lipstick kisses polka dotOscar Wilde’s neutered sphinx.According to rumor, a bureaucratanchors his paperwork withthe severed stone sex.Someone has stolen Jim Morrison’sbronze bust, a poppy and twistofContinue reading “Père Lachaise by Jennifer Lagier”

On the Eiffel Tower by Christopher Buckley

On The Eiffel Tower by Christopher Buckley The wrought iron was strung up purely in the substanceless abstraction of thought, set somehow against all the trips and balances of nothing, the engineering of the air. Above the pylons he arched the shrinking heavens with girders resembling an aviary or pergola, then figured out the twelveContinue reading “On the Eiffel Tower by Christopher Buckley”

A Drama in the Luxembourg Gardens by Jacques Réda

A Drama in the Luxembourg Gardens by Jacques Réda    Between the chestnut trees with nothing else to do But ponder their chestnuts (how smooth they are, how round) And the great pond where the rain, too, makes its rounds,    A child has abandoned his toy to pursue    An old, swaggering pigeon. Such a humid day,Continue reading “A Drama in the Luxembourg Gardens by Jacques Réda”