False grapes and genuine salami
Hang from the restaurant ceiling
And we are under them
Eating the spaghetti carbanara
And snails and we feel full
Of meaning. The hostess sits
At the front door at a lectern
With a musician’s lamp
Shining down on her sheet
Of reservations. Have you been there.
You have been there.
It isnt abstraction. It isnt
Detachment. It isnt communism.
It isnt Maoism. It isnt Hitler.
They couldnt make it. They
Were eaten, or ate themselves.
It isnt cubism. It isnt ironic. It isnt
Post-modern and non-referential. It
Is the necessary. It is the sensual.
The waiters are slowly hurrying
Through the stainless steel doors
That swing both ways from the kitchen.
Outside the small intelligent mist
Of the Modern City is falling
And the streetlights are saying O, O,
Isnt it fortunate to be alive
And full of meaning and waiting
For the marzipan and blueberries
And french roast of feeling
In the last year of the 20th Century.