French Quarter Tryst

by Heather Ann Schmidt

on a Bayou night

down Royal Street
and beads and
ba do dee da—

the blues slipped
over me like a tight
cocktail dress

and music showed us where
to turn

the quarter swayed from
the tipsy air
and The River
reflected brown bourbon.

Little fires in windows
distorted by old glass
into orbs of ghosts,
wailing an Etta James song:

I want a Sunday kind of love….

and lovers staggered by,
drunk on the
ooo shoo do de dooo

of the half-naked night.

I took your hand
and showed you where to put it,
unlike a girl who goes to bed
early to get up for church.

We went into an alley
and let the

da doo dee dey

shadow over us.

“French Quarter Tryst”
appears in Heather Ann Schmidt’s new Crisis Chronicles Press chapbook
Red Hibiscus, published 1/1/2013.  The poem first appeared online in Opium Poetry 2.0.

Red Hibiscus is 26 pages, handbound with care, featuring a saddle stitched pale coral and deep grape cardstock cover.  Contents include “Song for Lilith,” “Ode to a Pablo Neruda Nude,” “Ghazal of the Night,” “Neorealism on the Streets of Birmingham,” “Duende in a Black Dress,” “Ganymede,” and much more.  To order, send $7 to Crisis Chronicles Press, 3344 W. 105th Street #4, Cleveland, Ohio 44111.

Heather Ann Schmidt received her MFA from National University and has taught writing for a number of higher learning institutions.  A fine singer and visual artist, she also edits the tinfoildresses poetry journal and is the founding editor of Recycled Karma Press.  Her previous books include Batik (NightBallet Press, 2012), Transient Angels (Crisis Chronicles 2011), On Recalling Life Through the Eye of the Needle (Village Green, 2011), Channeling Isadora Duncan (Gold Wake, 2009) and The Bat’s Love Song: American Haiku (Crisis Chronicles, 2009).