“…Who shall give a lover any law?”
~ Chaucer, “The Knight’s Tale” (Canterbury Tales)
The squeals up in a tree are of a squirrel
fighting off a suitor; perhaps a paramour?
The usage of this word, Middle English,
the 1800s, is for the sake of love, par amour.
I like the entry in Webster’s 1913 Dictionary:
lit, by or with love, from the Fr. par amour.
Such beautiful words: when did they turn
illicit, derogatory? Stripped of armor,
title, role, various defenses— beneath the flesh
is the heart’s taut muscle, matched to any matador.
Songs of courtly love all aim at the impossible:
the beloved out of reach, the hapless troubadour.
In Spanish, querida means dearest one. When did it come
to signify poor fallen dove, secret paramour?
Wong Kar-wai’s film has neighbors thinking the lonely journalist
and the secretary from the shipping company are paramours.
The screen’s painted in tones of broody red, shades of jazz
in the background. The message: love story with no guarantor.
The man whispered the secret that he could not share
in a hollow in a tree, and covered it with mud: nevermore.
Is it my voice you hear in your head, when you first rise?
I loved her first ere thou, wrote Chaucer, for par amour.
In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.
OTHER POSTS IN THE SERIES
- Landscape, in the Aftermath of Flood
- A Carol
- Little Winter Song
- Because it is years since I last saw you
- Landscape, with Remnants of a Tale
- En Crépinette
- My mother turns 78 and texts
- [poem temporarily removed by author]
- [post temporarily removed by author]
- Dark Body
- Chalk Circle
- Private: To the unrepeatable life, the poet writes
- Tarot: False Spring
- Making Dinner, I Hear Rostropovich on the Radio
- Field Notes
- Road Trip, ca. 1980
- Gold Study
- Ghazal Par Amour
- White List
- Dear noisy stream gurgling in the distance,
- First, Blood
- Rock, Paper, Scissors
- Thread and Surface
- Diorama, with Mountain City and Fog
- Preparing the Balikbayan Box
- The Jewel in the Fruit
- Landscape, with Geese; and Later, Falling Snow
- Landscape, with Threads of Conversation
- First One, Then the Other
- To Silence
- Morning, Cape Town
- Empty Ghazal
- High in the hills, the dead
- Dear unseen one,
- Saturday Afternoon at the Y
- Dear Epictetus, this is to you attributed:
- How have I failed to notice until now
- Field Note
- Dear shadow,