PRINT November 1984

Archie’s Parlor

Archie’s Parlor

The park at Versailles has a little connection to God.

(pick up: For I made it quite plain) For I made it quite


about what and why I was calling.

A landscape on the wall

is a different way of thinking.

That’s where our story begins: a colloquy

among figures captivated by blue, punctuated

by a sequence of touches like lipstick,

like nail polish. They’re what you see

with a sidelong glance, catching the light

that obscures all the rest.

The day

is a zero-sum game. It has

only twenty-four hours and

is extremely unlikely

to change overnight. The sun,

moon and stars

make an expensive

habit, a poetry

of least resistance.

But a wall is a garden.

if they’re both made of paper.

A spiky aura warns

of dangers you wouldn’t think to notice.

Here’s where I stop for breath.

Isn’t it

romantic?—to calculate the exact

angle of sunrise when miracles were fewer but far

more reliable than memory,

to keep reading

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