By Michael Durack -
They’d always have Paris or Varykino,
Lara and Zhivago or Ilsa and Rick
up on the big screen, we down below
in the darkened parterre, the warm glow
of compromised love washing over us from exotic
(remembered) Paris or Varykino.
Mind-hopping from Moscow to Morocco,
an ecstasy of escapism from the humdrum domestic
to the big screen from our seats down below.
For Bergman, Bogart, Christie, Sharif & co
had little in common with a Kathleen and Mick;
they’d always have Paris or Varykino
while we had Ballybunion, Salthill or Sligo.
But hold on a minute, here’s the trick:
between the big screen and down below
is merely a matter of scale. Picture show
and reality trade on the same emotions; the magic
of love means we’ll all have Paris or Varykino
whether up on the big screen or here down below.
Michael Durack lives in Ballina, Co. Tipperary. His poems have appeared in publications such as The Blue Nib, Skylight 47, The Cafe Review, Live Encounters, The Poetry Bus, The Stony Thursday Book, The Honest Ulsterman and Poetry Ireland Review. With his brother Austin he has recorded two albums of poetry and guitar music, The Secret Chord (2013) and Going Gone (2015). He is the author of a memoir in prose and poems, Saved to Memory: Lost to View (Limerick Writers Centre 2016), and two poetry collections, Where It Began (2017) and Flip Sides (2020) published by Revival Press.