The First in a Series of Beau Présents Written for My Favorite Poets

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Having received such an enthusiastic response to the two poems I wrote as examples of the relatively obscure French invented poetry form known as the beau présent on a recent post, I have been inspired to try writing an entire series dedicated to some of my favorite poets (warning: there are hundreds of poets I really adore so this may turn out to be a very long series). In case you have not read that particular post and have no idea what I’m talking about, the beau présent is a poem written to honor another person using only words made up from the letters contained in that person’s name. This very first one is my attempt at a heartfelt tribute to the brilliant Pulitzer-winning Serbian-American poet, Charles Simic (I hope you will enjoy reading it and be encouraged to try your own about your favorites):

A Beau Présent For Charles Simic

Charles Simic is so chill,
he’s as cool as chili-lime ice cream.
His smile is a classic semicircle,
his ears mimic small cameras.
I recall his earlier careers
as a clerical armchair researcher,
a Maharishi, a macrame messiah.
I cherish his mesmeric charisma,
I relish his harmless sarcasm.
He’s a shameless schemer,
a rare charmer, a seamless liar,
a serial rimer (all his similes are
sheer miracles). He’s a hammer,
a chisel, a seismic missile –
he smashes racism, he erases malaise.
His cashmere lies caress me,
his alchemical mercies shall heal me.
He is a real mishmash (as harsh
as Islam, as rich as Israel). He is America!

14 thoughts on “The First in a Series of Beau Présents Written for My Favorite Poets

  1. A wonderfully written poem, Paul! I look forward to your continued entries in this series. As a true fan of poetic styles, I was intrigued by this form when you first posted it. However, I will admit to being a little intimidated by the form and, as yet, have not given it a try. But I will eventually and I hope I can do it justice as well as you do!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Paul, this is a fantastic poem, and clever as hell to boot! Charles Simic is a fantastic poet… and I am very proud to claim him as one of our own from New Hampshire… in fact he lived across the street from my best friend growing up… Small world, but a beautiful world and you have perhaps opened our eyes to a master we should read more of!

    Thanks for stopping by the Go Dog Go Cafe today!

    S Francis

    Like

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