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from the November/December 2003 issue

“‘la vie,’ Edith Piaf sings

"La vie," Edith Piaf sings,
"La vie, la vie," seize the moment . . .
And this voice is eternally right
and there's no threat of it being buried in oblivion.
"La vie," she sings, where "La"
is the article and the word itself
is so short--the world
has never heard a shorter call.
"La vie," she sings, and it breaks
into a scream, a throaty scream.
Catch, catch this moment
given to us for something, by someone.
But if it's given, what for?
We possess it only in dreams,
seize, seize, seize--whom?
The very shortest moment of meeting.
"La vie," like a twig brushing the face,
or perhaps a razor blade over the veins . . .
Life again is approaching the end
and is completed with a prayer.

Read more from the November/December 2003 issue
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