For Jehanne – a work in progress
There was a maddening silence in the library
As I beat my head against the monitor,
Screaming 'Information overload! Information overload!'
Vlad looked up from his copy of the Financial Times
Smiling, sprightly for a man dead five hundred years,
He cleared the shelves in one bound
And plunged his kebab into the chest
Of a slightly startled Goth.
But Jehanne, dear Jehanne, stroked my fevered brow,
Whispering sweet revelatory mysticism, softly in my ear,
Whilst toying provocatively with her crucifix.
I shifted sweatily in my seat,
Anxious that such a blatant display of faith
Would bring the wrath of the liberal and the secular
Upon out unconventional heads,
For I feared the atheist police.
We left the building arm in arm,
She with me and me with she,
Picking flowers after dark,
Poisoning pigeons in the park;
Casting plagiarised clichés at the feet
Of uncomprehending passers-by,
While Friedrich, dancing with horses,
Played a penny whistle above an empty hat.
I sat by the side of the sodium wasteland
Weeping, silently, for what was, and could have been.
But Jehannne, dear Jehanne, stroked my fevered brow,
Whispering harsh quotidian mysticism, softly in my ear:
'I lose myself in you, and you in me,
Our suffering is our greatest loss;
But you may lose your certainty,
When you see your lover nailed to a cross.'
Russell J Turner – January 2010
4 years ago