Sunday, June 25, 2017

Midnight in Marsielle (A Found Prose Poem)




Sun-kissed, with the taste of the sea in my mouth,   I drove along the fantastic roadway that flanked the sea.  I gazed to the north, awed by the wild mountain peaks in the distance, snow-capped and glittering in the Mediterranean sunlight.  I slowed the car to stall to watch life resume in a glimmering fishing village near the bay, flashing past my rear-view mirror like the still life in a roll of Polaroid film.  I couldn't help my tourists eye to marvel a trio of fishing vessels off the shore, the brilliance of a pink-blue sky, shimmer of the sea.

I watched the village rise before me in its street-light illuminated night-garb.  A cluster of cars were parked before the cafe.  Across the narrow street a raucous record played at top volume in a flat above the bakery, the forlorn lyrics undecipherable of a foreign dialect.  Over a rolling suburban hill of cobblestone and crosswalk, the avenue came into view.   Magnificent with its sumptuous shops, the cafes with their crowded terraces, elegant hotels and a cardboard sign that portrayed 'secondhand bookstore four blocks down.'  

Perusing a street I've never known, I walked self-consciously into the cafe, a stranger to me at this hour.  The lights were low and full of shadow.  Candles sat in netted jars on each table, wrapping the room in an early-century aura.  A sprinkling of local citizens sat over glasses of cheap wine.  Languidly, they enjoyed the view, the piquant-sea accent of the air.  Across the room, smoke-filled and wine-scented, a trio of Frenchmen were talking with loud contempt.

A few breath-beats after my order, made in broken French, the waiter brought my liquor and coffee.  I sipped the pungent taste of the liquor, my eyes glued to the shadowed entrance of the cafe...


**I wrote this found poem by gathering broken pieces of description in the vintage book 'Where is Holly Charleton?'  by Susan Marvin, 1973.

11 comments:

  1. There are days when I long to go to an unknown cafe in an unknown place and just sit silent in a corner watching and listening... I feel tempted to travel without a goal.

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  2. You set a wonderful scene here, one which I would like to 'see' firsthand...but then again you caused us to see it through your eyes. Nothing like being among local citizens to experience an area's flavor!

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  3. Once more your special brand of magic takes me away!

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  4. It makes me crave hot coffee and the song of waves...

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  5. You took me right into the scene. It is even more amazing, considering it is a found poem, and so descriptive.

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  6. Beautifully drawn with a wonderful eloquence of detail. I am there!

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  7. Really enjoyed this motley assortment of nature and people with its exotic scent. Very much atmospheric and we can relate.

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  8. This makes me long for the taste of the sea in my mouth, too! Delicious details :-)

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  9. Absolutly loved this, The South of France fills a huge space in my heart. You've woken some lovely old memories and so I thank you for that. Great read too.

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  10. Wow!! This makes me long for coffee while I watch the waves.. sigh..

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  11. Love, love, love this scene so strangely exotic and full of mystery.

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Thank you for taking the time to comment, it is so appreciated. Your thoughts and critiques are always welcome! I will be by to visit your blog soon!