Aug 26, 2010

Sheryl St. Germain

Here's the video of Sheryl St. Germain reading (sorry about the bad audio) an hilarious poem, "A French Mosquito Defends Itself," from the new collection of poems she was working on in July while here at La Muse. It flips over after a few seconds... :

Here are the blood-thirsty lines:

A French Mosquito Defends Itself

Eet is not easy always to speak with your race,
you of zee mountainous body, you who do not
always pay attention to such small sings as us.
But you should, mon ami, you should.  We have lived
millions and millions of years, we have been found
preserved in zee amber from a time unthinkably
before yours.  And you will not find a way
to exterminate us anytime soon with your stupeed
fog blowing trucks and chemicals with zee Latin
names that hurt you more zan zey do us. 

You speak of us as biting, attacking you. 
Zeese are all zee wrong words, mon ami.  Eet is only
the female of our species, such as myself, who drink
your blood.  Like your vampire we must have a blood
meal every now and zen, but only to make zee eggs,
zee blood is necessary for zee protein of zee eggs, oui?

So we do not bite, first of all, we search out zee ones of you
zat smell best—we search for zee most intoxicating aroma,
we land, we enter, we sip, we drink, we swill
but we do not bite, mon ami.
                      Sink of us, if you will,
as connoisseurs, and your body, a terroir.  We
are searching for zee right vintage, zee good structure
zee good nose, zee long finish, good color, a warm
taste, zee good texture in zee proboscis. Très elegant,
zee slight prickle going down, ooh la la, I must sit down.

So you should feel honored when I choose you above
others, it means your blood is like wine to me, with
zee beautiful aroma and bouquet and moi, I like
zee blood with a hint of berry and darkness,
zee blood with a taste of La France in it from the past,
and how shall I say, a little bit fat, the way we like
things preserved in zis country (zee confit du canard,
for example, you fat ones have zee good taste like
zee confit du human). 

Your body ees like a vineyard with rows and rows of
grapes, your body ees  zee raw material for our eggs,
so non, we do not attack, monsieurs et madames,
we harvest, we feed, we take what we need to
survive, only a tiny bit, not any more.    It eez true
that we spread zee word when you taste good,
that eez why, mon ami, you have 55 bites,
as you call them, 55 leetle mountains of objection

from your body, your slow body, I might add,
whose defenses do nothing to us, but
torture you after we are long gone.  Where,
I ask, eez zee logic in zis torture?  What
young and inexperienced god has formed you?
We mosquitoes would not have survived
one hundred years with such a system.

Maybe you can sink of me, too, as a bit
like Jean D’Arc, My proboscis eez my sword,
I rally the troops, I get us all on the same body,
but not to attack, only to take what eez rightfully ours,
zis blood our bodies have been built to harvest
for our children. 
      Aren’t we a leetle like you Americans,
you want to take zee oil, zee minerals,
zee ideas etc. from zee ozer countries,

and if sometimes you carry by mistake
some hitchhiker, some parasite, somezing,
from your culture, say, that infects or kills,
it’s not your fault, like us, you were born for zis.

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