Young love wore a black beret
before I’ve even acquired a taste for the garlic.
Desire, in the face of desolation, was the fuel of youth
and knowledge, or lack thereof, its propeller
and I was propelled.
Years later I still hold the perfume-
late night, 22, me, him and a motorbike on the cobbles
of the quarter Hemingway had left half parched- Mouffetard
with its table wine and Sandwich Grec as I devoured
the leather clad lover on front of the bright lights
in the dark night that danced like unsinkable stars
along the seine. And I could barely breathe.
We cut, much later, at every curve
covered in concrete, I’d been duped
by your solid structure, having let go of the leather,
all that gilding requiring so much guile to be cast upon.
Something fell into the river while we licked the illusion
and, in panic, I lost hold of all translation. We dined out,
finally, on a meal that was as bitter on the palate
as the distance we had come from those bright lights
dancing and, for dessert, we tossed that first desire
into the blades of the propeller.


All words and photos by Damien B Donnelly

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