Of course I’d been to Paris
before, but not without supervision.
And if Dylan ever had a dry patch
this was it, which meant the club
was intimate, tickets cheap
and the young among us shoved
upfront, thrilled, skin on skin.
Electric guitar, him in a lurex suit
tootling at the piano a while. So close
my fingers could’ve been crushed
by his white patent rock-star brogues
stamping a beat. And what I know is
at the first strums of my favourite song
(which would lose its shine when
I got fired up about misogyny
but that was later, not then) as he filled
his lungs to sing Nobody feels any pain
he looked directly at me –
with Dylan I was living the phrase
we locked eyes – at which point
in the story my husband always replies
Yeah right. But he was late on the scene
the one I married and green-eyed
over the Legend who saw me first:
nineteen, alone in Paris,
singing my heart out without
the slightest inkling of ache or break.
This poem was written for Ryan Van Winkle’s Blues Studio and was inspired by Hayden Carruth’s poem ‘Scrambled Eggs and Whiskey’.
“I inherited a love of Dylan from my Dad, and have seen him perform several times. Did he once pick my face out from the crowd? I think not. But the poem allows me my happy little fantasy.”