Intermittent de-realization

by Andrada Costoiu

Photo: “Dreamcatcher”, by Kai Stachowiak

Beauty in small, everyday things
Helps you put everything into perspective.
Champs-Élysées has the almost unreal beauty of a dream,
Two cherry threes are in blossom in front of a bookstore, 
The ghosts from inside books’ pages came out in their smart or funny clothes,
To stare at the pink metaphors of human existence…..

Immersed in an odd silence, I walk,
Looks like a pedestrians’ strike.
It feels viscerally wrong, 
My thoughts of “solastalgia”
Bounce on stacked bistro chairs and abandoned happy-hour menus.
A statue wearing a mask reminds me that 
The current despoliation is unrelated to the rain or any ecological crisis,
And I touch my pocked to feel the antiseptic immediacy.

Generally, I feel fine,
Until a drone stops above my head and a voice from inside yells at me
“We are at war!” 
I am not sure if I should run or greet the voice inside the drone,
And with unexpected new awkwardness I blow it a kiss,
Only to remember that there is a ban on air-kissing too.

I walk faster,
Rethinking my trip to go get bread on a sea of extreme waves:
Happiness from seeing the cherry trees and the ghosts under,
Sadness over the streets devoid of much life, 
And anxiety from the pandemic.

Note: I wrote this in March, when France was in quarantine. Much has changed in Paris(and the world!) since then…


© Andrada Costoiu and, 2020- . Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Andrada Costoiu and, 2019 with appropriate and specific direction to the original content

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