Tryst Poetry by Greg Braquet 

Hiding in Lions

At the sidewalk Café we sit
Stoic in purpose
Like the two stone lions
Outside the town library,

Content to just stare onward 
And absorb the lives of others.
Sentinels to what lies just ahead,
And there is much lying ahead.

Smiling lions? No.
It is merely erosion,
Experience smoothing lines
To thin grins, a perception of joy.

We dare not look to each other
For fear of finding effigies peering back.
What could be burning so?
Dreams? Passions? Vows? 

We can only acknowledge simple logics,
Basic conversation
Tumbling off the lion’s rough tongue
Consumed and all consuming:

“The coffee is hot.”

“Yes. It is hot.”

But we never answer
The burning question.
We fear it so. 
What could be burning so?

We are experienced. We are worldly.
We are worlds apart savoring the gap
As if it were the only 
Piece of shade on the savannah.

Distance brings a strange comfort
By reducing the need to touch
The strands of gray in our manes.
There lies our fear but also something more…

We suspect under the stone lies nothing,
Hollowness carved by a world-wise edge
That cuts both ways on most days. So…
Devoid of pride, we roar by saying nothing:

“The weather is nice, today.”

“Yes. It is nice.”

At the sidewalk Café we sit
And try our lying suits on for sighs.
But we are not lions.
Lions are not everyday cannibals.

© 2002 Greg Braquet

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