BOOKENDS; TO DARE TO REMEMBER

 

Do you remember Paris on occasions when spring sweeps in
with its breath of those lost days, in that other life, before
we knew London together or what it would be like to part?

Do you, do you remember Paris, my little room, our lithe love
and the plans we painted onto canvases of comfort at night,
in a single bed, in a corner, before I lost my way and we lost us?

Those lazy days of hazy light that fell to nights at a water castle,
the name-deceptive metro, where kisses took us on to the dawn.

Do you remember the first spring of our song, how it warmed
its way into a summer of sipping wine by the old, new bridge
before we’d slumber in the shade, in the park, below that bridge,
on the first site of the city, while the waters ran away with time.

Remember the rainstorm, that Sunday morning, birds near broken,
I find it funny how I missed any warning in their fluttering?

Do you remember catching colour amid the concrete of la Jatte,
in the shadow of Seurat, on a Sunday morning, still sleeping,
when we stopped to make connections between balance and breath.

You sang of the dots within the water and the sky, on that ordinary day,
in a summer of simple, on a stroll on a Sunday, along an isolated island,
in a city where everything ordinary was suddenly so extraordinary.

Do you remember that silly single bed in the corner; I always woke up
stuck to the wall. The sofa, the table and the sunflowers of plastic;

so not what you’d imagined at all.

Do you dare to venture to those times departed, when not a minute
suggested what time would design or all that we’d have to let go?

Remember Paris, remember you,
remember me,

remember us.

   

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly.

We had met one night in Dublin, when I was still living in Paris, an Englishman putting on Les Miserables in my hometown while I was walking on the footsteps of Val Jean and the pretty ladies and the gang. We explored every inch of Paris and its musicality until I moved over to London and we learned how to get to know each other. We didn’t find forever but we will always have Paris.

 

11 thoughts on “BOOKENDS; TO DARE TO REMEMBER

    1. deuxiemepeau

      It makes as a nice break from the twists I usually turn through although, looking over this again, it’s not really a Disney fairytale 😱😂

  1. Mike Powell

    There is almost a 19th century French romanticism in your poetry here, Damien. Some poets like Lamartine, if I remember my French literature properly, would return to places of former love and try to find solace and remembrance reflected in the natural elements, hoping that the sights, sounds, and smell would somehow speak these words–Ils ont aimé.

    “Que le vent qui gémit, le roseau qui soupire,
    Que les parfums légers de ton air embaumé,
    Que tout ce qu’on entend, l’on voit ou l’on respire,
    Tout dise : Ils ont aimé !”

    1. deuxiemepeau

      I guess France has whittled it’s way into my viens at this point! But it is true how attachments can be tied to elements, seasons and certain sunsets!
      Are you in Paris already? I’m just back to Paris now- lunch next week?

      1. Mike Powell

        I’m here in Paris now–have been here for a few days already. Let’s choose a day for lunch. I tried to send you a text so that you can have my number. If that didn’t work I’ll send you the number in an e-mail.

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