Milk Dates in Paris

by Zulu Samperfas

We lived in the 8th eme, near the Canal
A lovely apartment we couldn’t afford
our usual lifestyle
I did the shopping at the cheapest store I could find: Ed
Ed-day,  you say, and they sell life’s basics
like milk with the date stamped on it
and I’m careful about the date
We were Parisienne
Life abroad isn’t real, it doesn’t matter
you are not you, known exactly
your mother tongue is the lingua franca of the world
but a gulf separates you from the cares of the real
people there, a gulf of culture, experience, genetics even
I am an odd mixture of religions and regions, strange even for New York
There I am a different species, which is good because it helps my normal
worries stand still, and I am able to be a spectator on life
like a child, I
notice every little nuance of the French day and I am put on hold
I keep to myself, my own thoughts as I can understand
so little of what swirls around me
and that is a burden lifted
I am not homesick and I watch with the same curiosity
Americans on the Champs Elysses,
recognizable by the men in boxy t-shirts
and the women in athletic shoes
I don’t speak to them, they are foriegn to me now, too
we walk over centuries of experience, that have given a quiet wisdom
to this place and I learn every day, and the mistakes of the past
are right there under foot or in a museum
the scream and rage of the past has echoed for the last time
long ago, and something has been learned from it
France was right, “we are an old country, and a wise one,”
right before the second Gulf war
we didn’t listen
Life has slowed down here, 
In America we have that energy, that desire to create and make it
and we run ourselves ragged, into the ground, alone in our independence
no time for strangers but here, our friends take vacations and boldly
make a bridge to form a four day weekend and are proud of it
and invite us along for trips and long meals
and visits to old castles, now over run with “the people”
who enjoy the carved gardens and angular pools as much as 
any aristocrat ever did
and I don’t want to leave
I’m learning so much
but mostly I don’t want to be real again
I don’t want to be that American person with problems and no
excuses of distance and language and culture
and no excuses of the need for rest from the rat race
because in America, no one admits to that need
And one day in Ed the expiration date on the milk
is past our flight date
and I freeze in pain
knowing the milk will sit here
long after I am gone

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Dvorak : Slavonic Dance No. 2

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Are you sleeping?
Still dreaming?
Still drifting off alone…
I’m not leaving with this feeling
So you’d better best be told
And how in the world did you come
To be such a lazy love?

It’s so simple, and fitting
The path that you are on
We’re not talking, there’s no secrets
There’s just a note that you have gone
And all that you’ve ever owned
Is packed in the hall to go

And how am I supposed to live without you?
A wrong word said in anger and you were gone

I’m not listening for signals
It’s all dust now on the shelf
Are you still working? Still counting?
Still buried in yourself?
And how in the world did we come
To have such an absent love?

And how am I supposed to live without you?
A wrong word said in anger and you were gone
And how am I supposed to live without anyone?

And how in the world did you come
To be such a lazy love?
And where did you go?

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10007, Menzies & Superior.

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via imgfave for iPhone

Want a puppy. So cute!

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I want your warm body. on Flickr.       Well?

read and felt.

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"Having a rough day? Place your hand on your chest. Feel that? It’s called purpose. You’re alive for a reason. Don’t give up."

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(via My Paradissi)

Love a simple kitchen like this. 

(via thethinkingtank)

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"The planet does not need more ‘successful people’. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers and lovers of all kinds. It needs people to live well in their places. It needs people with moral courage willing to join the struggle to make the world habitable and humane and these qualities have little to do with success as our culture is the set."

Tenzin Gyatso, The 14th Dalai Lama (via Swanfeather Songs)

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"No man is an Iland, intire of itselfe; every man
is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine;
if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe
is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as
well as if a Manor of thy friends or of thine
owne were; any mans death diminishes me,
because I am involved in Mankinde;
And therefore never send to know for whom
the bell tolls; It tolls for thee."

Devotions upon Emergent Occasions
John Donne 

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