The Bones Underground

 

Os Sous-Terrains

 

Without flash, there is barely a chance against the shadows.

We’re too deep underground

For the sun to remember us.

 

Once standing, once dressed, once giving people in a taking society,

Buried so that my family could never rearrange my bones

In the old limestone quarries.

 

I am one of six million.

Something like nothing, and a lot like detritus

Left over from the city mold growing

Over our skulls like halos.

 

In the dark we are the bones of Parisian

Bakers and florists and foundry men and captains,

Hidden to snuff the stink of our disease

That never left the bones of the men who carried us

Through midnight Paris suburbs,

And were probably later carried themselves

To our geometric stacks.

 

A national treasury

Of anthropologic treasures.

A salute and a slap

To the greatness of the Empire.

 

The Empire of the Sun that never sank,

That just spun around the world

With its fiery mean eye,

That never reached underground.

 

Underground.

Quietly dismembered.

A parade with everyone smiling,

Their lips long, long decayed.

 

We are stacked.

Night after night

Flashbulb after flashbulb.

We are

We are

 

The Catacombes, Paris, France
The Catacombes, Paris, France

 

<< Heureux celuis qui a toujours

devant les yeux l’heure de sa mort et

qui se dispose tous les jours a mourir  >>

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