"Baudelaire the dandy under a tree": a poem by John Kinsella

". . . in the quietest corner / of the Jardin du Luxembourg. . ."

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Legless under the spreading tree,
his torso leafy green and spattered
with bird shit in the quietest corner
of the Jardin du Luxembourg, not far
from the bees, not far from horse
chestnuts plunging to the path,
raining on beautiful and disturbed
ladies of leisure, on prêt-à-porter
families, on earnest young men
dressed up in hope, on joggers
who pass by, flamboyantly silent.
 

John Kinsella is an Australian poet, critic, essayist and the current international editor of the Kenyon Review.

This article appears in the 05 November 2015 issue of the New Statesman, The end of Europe