Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Singing in the Rain (Poem)

Singing in the Rain

Madame's old umbrella
has run its reign, turned
inside out in the mistral.

She takes it — ribs splayed,
catch springs loosed,
the uncomfortable handle

inconveniently gone missing
— to the last repairman
in Paris. He welcomes all

the brokenness in a corner
of his crowded Pep's Maison,
raises not even a black brow

as Madame mouths Merde!
The snapped ribs, short tusks
that poke and jab, are one

thing, torn canopy another,
and price the only negotiable
she'll weather in good time.

The repairman takes his
expert measures in silence,
offers Madame the choicest

of carved wood shafts, new
scotch-guarded shield, extra
runners for along the top.

Madame nods her oui, watches
the quick job done. She smiles
to think of singing in the rain.

© 2014 Maureen E. Doallas

This poem was inspired by the NPR story about "No Rain on His Parade: Parisian Preserves Art of Umbrella Repair". 


Kathleen said...

What fun! What an action poem.

Peggy Rosenthal said...

Delightful! Though sitting here in western NY in 5-degree cold, I've almost forgotten how to imagine rain.

Vernon Wildy, Jr said...

I like that. That reminds me of all the umbrellas that broke in the wind while a student at Virginia Tech. The Blacksburg winds were brutal.

Todd Alan Kraft said...

A nice telling of interesting story. I think the sparse description works. An umbrella is a fairly simple device, and I think too flowery a poetic presentation would have taken, what I envisioned, a sleek classic black umbrella, and turned it into a flower bouquet. Anyway... I liked the narrative style.

nance.mdr said...

i like the idea of special umbrellas
getting fixed and continuing to be used

i like umbrellas

kelvin s.m. said...

..ha, what fun... and excellent reminder to just enjoy the moment... i loved this... smiles...

Björn said...

I grew up in a town were only the visitors used umbrellas filling the wastebaskets... An umbrella repair shop... Sounds great.

Ruth Mowry said...

I'm happy to see that you, too, were inspired by that NPR story about the last umbrella repair shop in Paris. :) Lovely poem with details you must have imagined, and so well.

Marina Sofia said...

I can't remember the last time we repaired an umbrella instead of just throwing it away - lovely idea and such an elegant poem, capturing a different way of life...

rallentanda said...

I like anything French with parapluies, parisian and Madames.A winner combination. Enjoyed!

Pealogic said...

Loved this story very much.

Brian Miller said...

i like the character of the repairman...accepting all the broken without raising an eyebrow...he is def a character i would love to explore a bit more...

Wyeth Bailey said...

like a tiny silent film