Café Apollinaire Part 2 Sideshow Attractions

Café Apollinaire Part 1I
Sideshow Attractions  
Gordon Coombes
April 30 1994 - Sept. 22, 2017 

Outside Café Apollinaire in the rain
a young girl does cartwheels
in the middle of a busy city street
out on a weekend pass
from a hospital a few blocks away
she returns to the Cafe talking at high speed
laughing becoming giddy
writing on tables and chairs
on her clothes and skin
with a rainbow of magic markers
draws pictures of flowers and suns
with happy faces
her friends bop around
unable to sit still
having spent too much time
living on the streets
leaving them hungry and manic
trying so hard to hide their pain
written off by those who hide
in their glittering Towers of Glass -

So many wash up on these shores
with no place to go
for awhile it is a safe harbour
a port in the storm
day in and out battered
by rough seas and high winds
struggling slowly navigating
through the dense fog
seeking refuge in Café Apollinaire -

it is a fantasy world
where they can dream
of being romantic heroes
in the wake of Don Quixote
searching for that special love
which last forever
a love eternal
even beyond the grave
of Operatic proportions -

the waitress wears a wedding dress
pretending to be Emily Dickinson
always has  a slice of caustic wit
for each patron as they try to order
a simple coffee and bagel -

in this café the walking wounded
act as if they are whole-

Others come here to be seen
soaking in the atmosphere
never get to live it
from the other side
finding it all quaint and amusing
sometimes they come here 
sometimes they visit the park
a museum the zoo
the Café another side-show
packed with Geeks and Freaks-

We are lost in sounds of Ocean Waves rumbling
roaring all around us distant horns sounding
from beneath the waves from out of dark space turned
to glowing shimmering sheets of light falling
from the sky curtains waving in the solar wind
of the aurora borealis warning us
sends shivers of recognition up and down our spines
chilling us to the marrow of our bones
remembering visions so clear of climbing
up and down Earth's Ladder 
on the glowing  yellow face of the Moon
while sitting reading studying for the final exam
we believe awaits us at the end of all our wanderings
all our suffering all our joy
when we are taking our last breath
so many thing we need to know
so many things to remember
wondering what we left out
as we sit in a dirty dingy rat-infested room
every inch coated with tobacco smoke
watching life drifting by tumbling along
just out of our reach waiting to be reborn
waiting to be resurrected 
waiting for an invitation to take part
in this celestial dance dancing 
to the Music of the Spheres-

Searching through ancient Tomes
of philosophers and poets and phrophets
preaching in the Market Place
to mocking crowds in the desert
to the sand and vast emptiness
from Virgil Homer and Horace
to exiled Dante imprisoned Cervantes
and Chaucer telling elaborate dirty jokes
to Francois Villon left to die on a scaffolding
where Morality and Miracle plays were performed
in the days preceding 
to excommunicated out-casted debt-ridden Baudelaire
and patron saint of Artist and poets Apollinaire
and all their distant offspring
from Plato Socrates and Buddha
of the tormented Moses and Abraham and Elijah
of the crucified Nazarene and Muhammed
of saints sages seers and mystics
of those drowning in burning visions
of Heaven and Hell
of William Blake brooding
to T.S. Elliot despairing
to Sartre and Beckett overwhelmed
by crashing waves of nausea
to Hans Arp and Rilke's Angels
swirling around our lost sad souls
searching for a clue to all this existence-

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