AT LA BASILIQUE DU SACRÉ-COEUR DE MONTMARTRE
I looked out on Montmartre and I wept.
So many roofs of straight slate, gray and blue,
the terra-cotta stovepipes all that kept
a hint of warmth and roundness in the view.
I sank against the fencing and I wrote,
pulling down my hat’s stiff, woven brim,
to pry the hemline of my overcoat
from where it had been caught on railing trim.
The simple motions of a simple soul
laboring to breathe at such a height –
ashamed, almost, unable to control
what caused the crowds no trouble at this sight.
We ordinary hordes, aboard this terrace:
musicians, jocks, performing artists, mimes,
so casually overlooking Paris
in covert, …