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Rue Saint Severin

On the map
it is a dash
—-
more narrow
than a fingernail.
Do not point
you’ll miss it
as we miss
most things
that require
a gesture
or a guide.

This room is filled
side to side
by a bed.
The far wall,
as if by accident,
or a romantic reminder
of antiquity and your own
passing through,
is left exposed:
Tonight I will sleep
next to a monument.
I can touch
what is gone.
The stone holds it:
remnant.

Doors tall as the tall ceiling
open in and toward one another,
like butlers at a ball,
and this bed-sized room gives way
to a courtyard made for two.
Ivy, moss, red brick shimmering and damp.
The heavens by neighbors narrowed
to a rotunda of cloud tinged blue.
In the center, glowing yellow,
sits a table round as a child’s first drawn sun.
Two slender chairs
lean in like old friends
arguing over a map.