by Romain P. A. Delpeuch (March 2022)
Impression, Sunrise, Claude Monet, 1872
Machines unsting the real, remake our dreams in shapes
I’m not able to feel. Outside, our time escapes.
Let’s seek the ways of old, may they dispel the fear
long cast on souls unbold, and sharpen all the blear,
incentive glimpses of immaculate despair
extruded from above, narrating primal scare.
Believe the night’s soft song, peruse its glyphs in stars;
observe them well: they long and crave for blood and scars
behind their hypocrite, deceptive brightness, fake
benignity. The pit eternal, wakeless lake
you sense and feel in you, lies at our being’s core.
Below, remain the few pristine delights of yore,
remains a speck of hope entwined in the old roots
of trees blooming up slope. Under, rot other fruits
writhing and stinking high, ceaselessly, to our heads.
Now, I’ll rest on your thigh. Hold me. Bind us with threads.
I love the girl you were,
the girl I’ll never meet,
the girl who now is dead.
I only know defeat,
I’m late and you can’t stir
my sorrow still unread.
There’s no remembrance of
the silly boy I was
when you already rose
amidst the crowd’s applause
(a fickle kind of love).
The course of life so goes.
You keep your sadness in
when joy you spread around.
I wonder what you do
when you can’t hear a sound
and all that’s left within
is silence, gone, gone through
the tears you didn’t shed.
Does perfect mastery
of the deceiving art
pay for their flattery,
for truths you keep unsaid
and hidden in your heart?
Don’t fear to please them not,
those people who you think
have power upon you.
How all their soft words stink!
They’re stale and sour. They plot
to use and misshape you.
They sully what they touch
and spit corrosive lies.
How can you be so sure
they haven’t spoiled your eyes,
corrupted, as they clutch
your soul, that was still pure,
your first impulse, when still
you could tell right from wrong
and weren’t rebuked for it?
May you remain that strong,
and never bend your will,
your sense, your reason: never quit.
Romain P. A. Delpeuch was born in south-west France, where he still lives. His poetry and short fiction have appeared in New English Review, Terror House Magazine, The Ekphrastic Review, Apocalypse Confidential and Ekstasis.
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