by Sheikha A.

It is France in my head;

I hear the madman by the bridge
percolating the stillness of night
with a quivering on his enfeebled lips,
a language puerile as he sings
his chanson of the departed ages,
a day not too old, a week nubile,
as the months roll on like weeds
in a sprightly pond of lotus-greens.

I hear the echoes cradling the bridge,
the lost anchors of a time ill spent,
the madman’s voice a lust for life,
like a nightbird that sings her story
to the moon – he sings for flight.

Harmony is settled deep in the lungs
of the night’s coquetry, clouds release
their scents across the sleeping river
resting into the charms of an unknown

it is France in all of my senses,

the music of the madman consummates
the transience surrounding me, I know
by the letters I write on walls, there is
a gondola to take me across, two hundred
days closer to the edge of the river’s bend.

Without tarrying, I rush to the moon
before the days treble ahead further,
the madman’s voice strong, I write
about the ravines of voids I’ve hiked,
across terrains of solitude I’ve traipsed,
before the days expire on my untold story;

halved of the time bold in its fleeing,
I write about the madman – robbed
of death, deserted by life.

IMAGE: “Ile de France, Paris” by Pont Neuf Paris Art. Prints available at fineartamerica.com.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Everyone goes through a midlife-crisis moment once in their lives at least. In my case, I feel I may have already visited the syndrome quite a few times. Sometimes there is no reasoning to writing poetry, just a whimsy muse that must release in the form of ink on paper. My creative processes are likewise – no reasoning, just writing.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sheikha A. currently lives in Karachi, Pakistan, after moving from the United Arab Emirates — and she believes the transition has definitely stimulated a different tunnel of thought. With publication credits in magazines such as Red Fez, American Diversity Report, Open Road Review, Mad Swirl, Danse Macabre du Jour, Rose Red Review, The Penmen Review, among many others, as well as several anthologies, she has also authored a poetry collection entitled Spaced, published by Hammer and Anvil Books. She edits poetry for eFiction India.