French Heat - Poem by Colm Flanagan
Spilling out like a rug,
the morning scatters amongst
the scrub of La Martiniere.
Bleaching each blade,
the sun seeps into
the wilting shadows.
Only the creamy children ignore the heat
and bounce naked and puppety limbed
on the white stones of the roughened courtyard.
They all swelter and swarm amongst local markets,
marvelling and ogling at slabs of fat slathered
buttermeat pate and cordons of sweating cheeses,
each engorged atom a sweet perversion.
They graze and swill on oiled olives and purpled wines,
fingertip lift silver anchovies-
and swallow the vinegary shiver.
At lunch the flies befriend them
and descend to play chopsticks
with their eyelash legs.
their cars whisk past
rows of dying sunflowers
hanging their brown heads
like praying druids
and make their way to water.
Weedy green lakes or azure pools
they don’t care.
Just to slither, like lizards
into the wet.
At night the long days heat
crawls indoors and hides
in room corners
ready to strangle
the night’s natural cool.
But outside amongst the peeping stars,
they are happy.
These days have reached their senses.
they talk and laugh
and meet each other.
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