Magazine | May 23, 2016, Issue

Poetry

THE SS NORMANDIE

Confiscated from Vichy France, she sat

In the Hudson for months until the fire.

The smoke was so thick over midtown, rumors

Spread the Japanese had attacked New York.

The old transatlantic style fulfilled itself

In her Art Deco and Streamline Moderne.

She looked like a giant clipper, narrow

As a blade in Cassandre’s poster, black hull,

White decks, red belts at waterline and bow.

France herself seemed docked off 42nd Street,

A windy boulevard of flags, a hall

Of mirrors larger than Versailles filled

With families, couples, aloof aristocrats,

Loners in tuxedos staring at the waves,

Card players in capes and gowns, a score of chefs,

Waiters staggering across the Atlantic,

Bound west for Manhattan one more voyage,

A wine cellar the size of the Morgan

Library, an orchestra floating beside

Confounded seabirds strutting on lifeboats

Seating eighty.

     The Francophiles are gone,

Belloc, Repplier, Wallace Stevens, who loved

France forever, until death, loved her

For what she had been, not what she’d become.

The old Thomists are gone, Maritain, Gilson,

Marcel, who left Vichy on the Normandie

And watched her towed for scrap down the Hudson.

Lawrence Dugan — Lawrence Dugan’s poems have appeared in Chronicles, First Things, Image, Modern Age, and National Review.

In This Issue

Articles

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Sections

Politics & Policy

Letters

The Apartment of Labor Scott Lincicome’s comprehensive and illuminating article “The Truth about Trade” (April 11) describes several government policies that have acted to exacerbate current labor-market inefficiencies. One could speculate ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ As Abraham Lincoln said, “You’re fired.” ‐ Protesters, many of them riotous, dogged Donald Trump in southern California. In Costa Mesa, they blocked an interstate, threw debris at passing cars, ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

THE SS NORMANDIE Confiscated from Vichy France, she sat In the Hudson for months until the fire. The smoke was so thick over midtown, rumors Spread the Japanese had attacked New York. The old transatlantic ...

Most Popular

Culture

Gillette Is Not Wrong

Is the new Gillette razor ad a radical feminist attack on masculinity — the commercial embodiment of a woke sensibility? I was prepared to think so. But having watched it twice, I find a lot to like. The ad has been panned by some conservative commentators. With all due respect, I think they are falling into a ... Read More
PC Culture

David Webb’s White Privilege

And here I thought I was the only black man with white privilege. Areva Martin, a CNN “analyst” — whatever in hell that means anno Domini 2019 — was in the middle of a spirited exchange with the conservative talk-radio host David Webb about racial preferences in hiring. Webb argued — as ... Read More