I am the hub of all Paris,
The center of its spokes and wheels.
I am the point about which the arrondisements spiral,
The direction of the Triumpal Way.
I stretch from the Arc's wreath of remote control cars,
Past the gold lit match of crane's and unseeing eyes,
Beyond the Sun, beyond his horse, beyond their hooves, years off the ground.
I am buried beneath the pyramids,
Balanced on their tips.
I am the words and the bread,
The wine and the wind,
The flowers hanging form Haussmann balconies.
I am the piss in the metro,
The wysteria growing their paper grapes.
I am the poplars on the quai.
Their leaves a shimmering gypsy dress.
I am the slow pull of the water,
The stubborn push of the land.
I am the broad shoulders over which the Seine is bent.
I am the weight of St. Denis's head and
The angle at which he holds it.
I am the holy kisses of men
meeting at Medditerranean markets.
I am the abrupt kisses of women
cutting up conversations.
I am the soft kisses of lovers,
held like marbles between the lips.
I am the toasts to birth
to the thin thread of white light which ties them all together.
I am the tunnel with its royal ghosts.
I am the open books of Verlain and Baudelaire,
The ones that have yet to be opened.
I am the flour in the boulangerie.
I am the blood in the charcuterie.
I am the stench in the fromagerie.
I am the appetite which devours all three.
I am Paris, because Paris is made of me.
I am the stars.
I am the stone.
I am the one to whom St. Genevieve still points.