Hairline’s fray in the humidity. Motorcyclists rev. Cutlery clicks and midday wine disappears in street-side cafes. I always feel uncomfortable when people drink at lunch. A side-effect of my mother.
Checkered tablecloths cover elbow-less tables, crowding the sidewalk. The fair is charcuterie, nuts, foie gras, the inexorable onion soup, beer, wine, popcorn (?) and round goats cheese served warm over a salad for the egalitarian price of 22 euros a pop.
The tent-poles of conversation rise higher than their meaning, bypassing sealed windows high above the street: load baring Dees, the premonitory parted lips of Pees, broad ahs, the wisp of an I, and the hum between thoughts yet erected.
Cobblestones nip at your ankles, jostling you into the girth of short-sighted tourists, transfixed by their own expectation of experience. Wow, Paris, So NICE. Bon-joor! Mer-cee! Oh, I just love French!
The city’s infectious glory: cigarettes coiling in golden light, later ashed on still-bleeding meat, a red kiss left on a napkin, slim ankles disappearing into covered shoes (never flip-flops, but always looks, if so), facial muscles you could only suspect the use of, you slack-jawed yokel, when have consonants ever come from your mouth with such intention? Like a baby seal slick with oil, the French coat their self-loathing in obstinate pride and an over-abundance of eyebrow.