France after the Affair
Linda Leedy Schneider
We see the crumbing tower of a castle
from our balcony in Beaucastel,
drive toward it through the vineyards
toward the Rhone. The road dwindles
becomes a flowery field. He spreads
the new blue and yellow tablecloth
We share a ceremony of goat cheese,
olive tapenade, tomatoes and fresh bread,
open a bottle of wine, lie back on our tablecloth.
Later there are fresh figs and grapes
as barges float by our castle.
We bought the cloth in Avignon,
where yesterday the mime stood sturdy,
the carousel glittered,
and a woman danced the Fandango alone.
Children followed a magician
pleased with his trail of scarves
and the surprise of the dove.
He took me to the carousel
and Avignon blurred
as I felt his familiar hand
help me onto the white horse.
All I ever wanted seemed to be there:
the good man, the white horse,
starlight and the music of childhood.