I have fallen into an unknown novel,
into a terra cotta town of pastel light
and tall trees here and there, fronded.
Mint-green buses run from the fifties.
The role is on and so I play it!
To whom shall I unburden my sadness?
Fatima of the Dark Eyes lives close by.
Will she frown or smile if I knock
on the wrought-iron filigreed door?
Something tells me I must glibly shrug
and act as if things are almost natural.
Fatima sighs and her lips are smiling.
She brings me an ivory mug of beer,
shaped like a squat elephant praying,
its hinged lid opens as if in surgery!
Who is writing this damn thing, anyway?
I suppose I must keep on ad-libbing...
Oh no! On this terrace of begonias,
Fatima's deep eyes are now drifting,
as I go nervously into confessions.
I'm under compulsion to burden her,
between drags on our cigarettes.
I must tell about the indignant ghost
I've trapped inside my foolish soul.
Fatima excuses herself with politeness,
and with sardonic wink she glides away.
She goes now somewhere for dancing --
a vague dance to wine-dark mandolins.
Her going splashes me with evidence.
Strong clues about where this is going.
Yes!...this novel is about the impossible.
A story of words that can't be spoken.
About the shape of great foolishness,
how the stolen diamond of my blue love
is so blemished with my character flaw.
Copyright 2011 -- Tim Buck