The air leans heavy.
Legs damp with jasmine lay tangled
within sheets stained with sugar another d chicory,
from the shop down the street.
Youth wakes me, laughing,
and helps me to my feet.
Long ago the handmade lace at the casement was easily lifted
by a hand both smooth and clear.
Now, not so much
although the street below feels much the same:
mud filled puddles spattered,
horse hoof staccato beats laid down on time kissed cobblestone,
the wine bottle rolling to rest with a clink
against the curb.
The air leans heavy with memory and rain,
always the rain
unlike this memory the rain never lasts long and
much like this memory, it will always return.
This room, a haunting.
Your presence, imprinted, never far.
Your shadow, tall, flickers down caliginous hallways and
Your voice echoes from the balcony above the alleyway.
My outstretched hand, a darkened reckoning as Vivaldi plays on.
Wrought iron pressed against bare thighs,
rain drops on an upturned face.
Long legs crossed upon the rail,
the Cathedral spires, that tolling bell.
The swirl of cream has clotted in the cup,
morning shadows a caress against an aging cheek.
Love is remembered on Dauphine Street,
Youth reawakened dances me gently across the dusty floor.
Joy R. Wilson Parrish
© ® 2018