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So Far: 1

Michele Leggott

1   on the first day of October
in a city without hot water
the temperature climbs to 31 degrees
and I
in a room with full-length mirrors
wash like an odalisque petalled self
on the tiled floor, diffuse light
as of jalousies or halogen
keeping the frescoes chalky

2   sprucking
for love's boy on a pavement
covered by fallen blossom
victorious armour
washed away in the night
endless headlights bearing
one avenue to another
three thousand solar showers
have been purchased
since the explosion

3   the fire-eater juggles
torches knives an iron ball
five teeth missing by the river
his bride sings a cappella
veils tied to a balcony railing
fructus veneris fructus sancti
white laburnum on the river path
warble on a bike
who will enter the shadows
under the bridge at noon?

4   the tests are successful
and service may be resumed
sooner than expected
I live like Utnapishtim in the distance
six floors up in a confluence
where Burnton meets Jolimont
that is how we got here
the trains wake me before dawn
each day is a bird in another place

5   Ingres fingers on the sidewalk
was she done, his shrieking Medusa
before the rain in the night?
bookstores stay open coffee is cheap
light falls in the Shrine of Remembrance
as if one body lay sleeping
on the cumulus of another
champagne sustains the wait
as urns are sent from kitchen to tub
elevators groan and whirr

6   it was a translation I brought back
nothing but guesses with expensive names
at wrist and throat I gained
three hours of sunlight
clouds of words
dispersed at the edge of space
a kiss disappearing off the page
I will never print again


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© Copyright 2002 Michele Leggott & Trout.