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Poem - Living in the Paris Pigalle

Updated on December 30, 2012



Once upon a time, soon, I would like..
to go and live in Pigalle

just for a month or two, probably

be the ubiquitous unknown poet

see sex and pseudo love and sadness

emulsified into one emotion

watch the whores waltz and the dancing girls dally

admire their French accents

at a distance

sip absinthe early in the doubtful days

then talk to the elephant behind the Rouge

watch the faithful clamber up to perch on Montmartre
soak up the culture of the performers

all the way from Africa

maybe like is not a strong enough word

to be a poet in Paris
and become what I might have been

doing these deeds in detail

scratching subconsciously
at the opaque glass of a tomorrow



Albert Maignan - La muse verte

Alas the sad elephant behind Moulin Rouge was removed in the early 1900's however with the correct shade of absinthe it may be possible that it will reappear....


Pigalle by Alberto Pozzi 1947



Place Pigalle in winter by Edouard-Léon Cortes


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    • Drax profile imageAUTHOR

      des donnelly 

      8 years ago from NYC....

      Hi Vespa... thanks for the comment... I've only been to Paris once but think about it all the time and am always planning to go back. It has that undefinable attraction and you either love it or you do not...

    • vespawoolf profile image

      Vespa Woolf 

      8 years ago from Peru, South America

      Beautiful imagery and memories. I love the stanza "opaque glass of a tomorrow". I love Paris and now I want to head back there!

    • Drax profile imageAUTHOR

      des donnelly 

      8 years ago from NYC....

      @Alain... thanks very much for the comment, I must correct this then. Absinthe is a little like poteen here in Ireland, it has been illegal for years and years but people still make it and drink it...

    • profile image

      Alain Ximmi 

      8 years ago

      Nice poem but the "the" in front of Pigalle isn't correct.

      It's just Pigalle. Oh and finding Absinthe is nearly impossible, nobody drinks it anymore (plus it is illegal). The closest place to find some would probably be in Amsterdam.

    • Drax profile imageAUTHOR

      des donnelly 

      8 years ago from NYC....

      rebekahELLe... thanks very much, I dreamed of going to Paris for years and so to eventually get there was fabulous and to soak up the sights and sounds and even just remember them is enough to carry one through the grey days...

    • rebekahELLE profile image


      8 years ago from Tampa Bay

      ah, yes, very nice. I have walked those streets and glanced up to see the windows dimly lit with shadows of lustful ladies peering seductively to those below. Paris is certainly a movable feast, as Hemingway once wrote. I love your poem and the images, delightfully perfect.

    • Drax profile imageAUTHOR

      des donnelly 

      9 years ago from NYC....

      Hey Larry... thanks for the comment... it reminds me of something Hunter S Thompson said...

      "The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side."

    • maven101 profile image


      9 years ago from Northern Arizona

      Drax...Keep scratching, my friend...soon the layers of time's grit will clear away...only to behold just another dirty, dank, and dangerous alley...

      Nice flow and bright images of an imagined poets roost...Voted up..Thanks, Larry

    • Drax profile imageAUTHOR

      des donnelly 

      9 years ago from NYC....

      Hi Majadez... yes Paris is always very tempting :-)

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Beautiful images selected and I'm thinking that I want to visit the Pigalle myself now. ;)


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