Paris Rain

When the rain finally fell we were already running

under the swell of an umbrella keeping us dry.

She asked me what I wanted to eat. It was Paris,

we could eat whatever we wanted.

The rain fell silver on black with the red, no,

green traffic lights weeping in its refection, every

bit of light cascaded and swooped. Well? What do

you want? The rain was more noise than water.

We read a menu in a window and ran to another, and another,

we ran huddled together like two old lovers – we could

have been old, we could have lived forever looking at

French menus in the rain and we wouldn’t have noticed.

Soup du Jour, Foies de Poulet, Saumon Grille,

I didn’t understand any of them. We chose somewhere

eating salmon and she ate chicken, and we drank beer

instead of wine and our clothes dried in the warm air.

Sometimes we were unhappy, our eyes peeping and nasty,

wondering what to say. I reached for my beer and touched

her soft, wet hand. It was cold and moved freely with mine.

She looked frightened as I held her, as if she could fall,

and I felt it too, a fear that at any moment

we could be eating chicken or salmon alone.

Her hand firmly gripped mine, cold but warming now,

and we laughed and listened to the warm rain outside.

 

© Michael Holloway