A Spring Evening in Paris with the Thieves of Love

Anthony found Ellen in the good samaritan way you would try.
If you are not alluring there are other ways.
Ellen, drunk, was left alone near St. Severin off the Rue de la Harpe
Where you smell butter and garlic and mussels and iodine
From bistros open to the street. Anthony loved that you could see
Some lovers eating and drinking in those bistros, happy and good.
He wanted to be in one with a girl.

Ellen, mottled in mottled lamplight on the churchyard cobbles:
Freckled, brown eyed, strong in clean denim overalls and white T-shirt. Barnyard coloured cowlick.
She knelt there being sick and knelt inside Anthony,
In a lyric opportunity.
Not many chances like this in life. He nursed and guarded her
To her place in Billancourt. She was afraid on the Metro.
A drunken kiss of thanks at her door tastes of sickness and anise.
Of course he came back. A real man would come back for more thanks, if it was his first chance in months.

She was brave, dramatically friendly, often in
The light that represents candles on stage.
She had the fierce compassion that terrifies.

He had been disqualified from girls by anxiety.

They bought food, flowers and wine in the market
And walked and bought books from bouquinistes
And cooked in her room. He wrote at her table.

The white iron bed by the sunny window can represent everything.

Who was this girl no older than Anthony,
Showing him friendship, making him grateful,
Showing him love?

” I like to do this,
Find one that I love, make something perfect.”

Sneaky shiny good love made both of stealth and of cunning…

Paul Anthony Hutchinson

Ludovic’s Novena

Ludovic’s Novena

“My thinking, and my longing, were prayer.
Thank you for all that is true but not yet real.

I borrowed an archetype: one
I could not have loved without,

Not Joan of Arc on fire, another
Miracle imagined girl,
In my mind when I was born.
Red cheeks and red nose, like an apple cheeked doll:
It was The Kind Little Girl,
Her heart glowing like a cigar butt in the door of a dark tavern.”

Paul Anthony Hutchinson
Dec 13, 2013

Near Effingham

Wind in the mane.

A thicket of music. Here is that

Lovely silk underwear green trout water,

A liver-spotted dog,

Horse breath and body steam,

Steaming urine in the grass, coarse

Grey mane in my face.

A farm breathes in my mouth..

The respectful bonfire’s voice:

Wet urine-soaked straw smoke.

Apple branch and vine trimming smoke.

You with me.

A moment’s happiness defiant.

My religion,

Pointillist again tonight.

Paul Anthony Hutchinson


Poetry Reading at the Antipodes Bookstore

Poetry Reading at the Antipodes Bookstore

Butter, daffodil, taupe, tan, sand, khaki to verdigris: words that are
Washes of notes, slurred on a stave of hours, of slurred hours.
Here I can move not alone through smut and honey toward art.

Other kinds of hours wait for us outside the bookstore
Like toughs waiting after school.
This, here, is the real hardship and the real adventure.

Houses, apartments, garages are studios.
It is you who are the bohemian now.
This is your only Paris,
These lewd Hamilton streets your Alexandria,
These are the ateliers and this is the cafe of the artists.

Paul Anthony Hutchinson

Published in the Broadway Review.

Laurel and the Mare


It was spring and Southern Ontario air tasted of trees.
A pregnant mare escaped to the woods from her prison on the estrogen farm.
She had long, curled hooves and cracked skin.
She came to Laurel and her two children at the edge of Beamsville.
Laurel had no work, a jumble of painted canvasses in the porch, her father’s
Hired man’s stucco cottage. Laurel, Hadley, Malcolm wore ski jackets and jeans.
The horse loved to exercise at night in the yard.
They combed her and gave her oats. They couldn’t afford a vet so they

Called a farrier horse dentist and she fixed the skin and hooves and filed the teeth.
They hung a trouble light on a nail and talked to the horse at night.
The farm smelled of animal again: you know the power of grass breath.
They read library horse books and what’s left of the family
Sang with the radio in the barn. Those might have been holy days,
They were feast days, and the children were pulled away from
American television by the strong and willing horse.

Torn French bread and good cheap Beamsville Magnotta wine on the picnic table,
Wine for the children, too, and they all read in their beds after dark.
Laurel went to bed thinking: “It’s La Vie Boheme for us.”
She gloated at the return of sexual
Feeling and the possibility of love and laughed her
Coarse, sweet, hee-haw laugh.

Paul Anthony Hutchinson
This poem was published in Canadian Poetry
Copyright Paul Anthony Hutchinson

Gloating Over Mildred

Gloating Over Mildred

St. Catharines light in the afternoon: lead oxide, pink white, dry mud shadows.
They lay on her living room carpet and Anthony gloated over Mildred,
Her cotton nightgown, her long back, and round shoulders: proof at last.
“So this is gloating. It is better to gloat than to doubt. It took me a long time.”

Her clean faded quilt brought from the balcony rail: it
Smells of clean laundry and cold air and the thrill of their power.
He’s proud to be the lover of a heroine,
And happy that he can see her this way.

Picnic kisses tasting of smoked oysters and beer.
There were never friendly kisses of love before?
“Mildred, I love hearing how you defied the adults.”

He told Hansel and Gretel to her child, who had strep throat,
And told it again, knowing it would work,

Seeing the bookshelves, seeing her notebooks,
Knowing that he would have his life after all:

The mispronounced words of a solitary reader,
The red skirt on the chair, the gold necklace of coins.

Paul Anthony Hutchinson

When I Am Old


When I am old I will shoot a fascist general
From the balcony of an old hotel. I will brush
The snow from the railing and rest the barrel.
I see him now, walking in the rose garden
With his wife, then drinking coffee in a sidewalk cafe.
He will have summer; I, winter. I will wear
A beret if my hair falls out. He could be
A retired fascist general who smokes a pipe and walks with his wife,
A dignified old man, such as I hope to be someday myself.

Do not give me a man who solved lives
For a mansion, a mistress, a mercedes. There are
So many, and so many waiting, and it would be worth nothing.
I want a man who killed responsibly, for a shape of the world. He will
Fight the rose on his coat as would a trout a hook
Or a young athlete a disease.
Give me the one who will look up and recognize me.
I will show him the black hole. He is my responsibility.

The concentration camps will not close if neither you nor I kill.
That is a vain hope. Men must feed their families.
The victims fall into their graves like snowflakes.
I imagine that they are intricate but I cannot
Examine them through the window. In my time
A few have fallen into my hands. For love, not this.

I will stay here by the window, thinking of this man,
And of his wife , and of how I will behave before the police.
When it is dark, I will see myself in the glass.

Paul Anthony Hutchinson
This poem was published in Geist and in O Telemachus