Paris,1896 - Poem by David McLansky
In my little garret room
Untouched by feather-duster broom
I slump down in my hard wood chair
And exhale cold clouds in icy air
Once I was rich, so rich in strength
I’d walk the city’s tireless length
And stop off at a strange café
Just to hear what the locals had to say;
Somehow I lost the wife and brats
Too many arguments, too many spats
I had the city as my cocoon
Now my range is this small room.
Once I could read by oil lamplight
Now headlines blur in full sunlight,
The mice sniff at my swollen feet
I stamp them to make them all retreat;
I bend my knee and raise my leg;
Should I be set with bowl to beg?
My horned and bunioned twisted toes
Could raise a coin if so exposed.
Once I strode the boulevards,
How my feet carried me afar;
Now they stall upon the stairs,
I had a thought to go out somewhere;
I sway and shuffle on the landing
My feet no longer are commanding;
How odd to stand here paralyzed
A treat for mice and buzzing flies.
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