a poetry e-zine










Anne Britting Oleson
Quick Change
(For Kate)

Flowing parachute silk, I would not
have known it for what it was:
wind, smoke, all swirl which fed
my yearning for chic, just as
our earlier lunch on the Rue des Ecoles,
of escargot and crusty bread,
laid reverently before us by
the handsomest, most attentive waiter
I've ever fallen in love with,
fed my imagination before this excursion
into used clothing on the Rue Monsieur la Prince.

You plucked the skirt from an upper rack,
bid me step behind a screen
only feet from the cobbled pavement
in this tiny closet of a shop,
and when I had shed the jeans
and floated the silk around me,
I became someone else, a denizen
of the Left Bank, who could step out
to the shop-woman’s plucking hands,
she who adjusted me as though
I were a mannequin, conferring
with you in rapid French, and
I could believe—perhaps—that
this someone else was really me.

Anne Britting Oleson has been published widely in North America, Europe and Asia. She earned her MFA at the Stonecoast program of USM. She has published two chapbooks, The Church of St. Materiana (2007) and The Beauty of It (2010). Another book, Counting the Days, is scheduled for release next year.

Copyright 2013  Chantarelle's Notebook