“The Fourth of October, T’en Souvient-il?” * Poetry * John Jack Jackie (Edward) Cooper

Amazing the ruin, the stupor of the misbegotten,
fervor of memory may assuage:

held long indoors, long drying and forgotten,
a pinch of spruce confuses —
a scent of miracles — overwhelming — brings to mind
the sweetly fragrance — tiny, tart and sticky —
pungent orange fruit of the Osage tree.

I can see it, that tiny orange,
feel it in my hand, clinging to my fingers,
still perceive the faint glow it cast
in my kitchen where it lay, collecting dust
amidst other, more natural fruit,
a curiosity to those who came —
now stuck with questions: what, what’s that?

Thrown high into the air it becomes the sun,
an orb burning with gone October;
a thousand rays transformed as leaves, a beech weeping.


*Note on the French: “T’en souvient-il” is equivalent to English “Do you remember it?” It alludes to a poem by Alphonse de Lamartine, “Le Lac” (1820), where that phrase famously appears.

–About John Jack Jackie (Edward) Cooper–

John Jack Jackie (Edward) Cooper is the creator of These Are Aphorithms, author of Ten (Poets Wear Prada, 2012),Ten … more (Poets Wear Prada, 2016), and translator of Wax Women by Jean-Pierre Lemesle (International Art Office: Paris, 1985). His work has appeared widely, in print and online, most recently in The Opiate, Paris Lit Up 7, and Brief Wilderness; forthcoming in Paris Lit Up 8, Blue River Review, and the National Beat Poetry Anthology 2020. He is Editor and Co-Publisher of Poets Wear Prada, a small press based in Hoboken, New Jersey. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, he lives in Paris.