Napoleon Talks to the Widow. Emily Hipchen.

7 Jan

Napoleon Talks to the Widow

I draw a tight circle around myself
roughly the shape of an island.
The rest of the world is born
through the O of the spy-glass
I keep on the desk in a box.
Whole days, whole weeks
I don’t open the box.

What was I atop the Carpathians—
in the Pantheon—horse-deep in snow?
Was I insane then, or now?

At my coronation, my chef
spun me a delicate sugar crown.
It dissolved in my mouth with a sweetness
I can almost taste again. That crown.
That sugar. You and I know better.

You know what I miss most? No?
My horse. The way it quivered
between my knees and still went on.
Why did he?

Here at the window, a box of watery glass,
I stand watching nothing, my hand holding
my heart in. The linen, the starch,
this placket with its bone buttons
like shards of ribs, this hand
and its one gold ring. See now?
How the tide’s come in.

Emily Hipchen

2 Responses to “Napoleon Talks to the Widow. Emily Hipchen.”

  1. G January 7, 2017 at 11:22 #

    Liked this a lot. No erudite reasons why, just did.

    • Patricia January 7, 2017 at 20:42 #

      Thanks for reading and responding.

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