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Improvisation and syncopation
mixed with American swing
penetrates open doors
spreads through the dining room.

Two guitars a lone violin, one bass—
France’s Gypsy Jazz
rockets the temperature.

Limehouse Blues turns up the heat.
Diners gyrate to the music
lean between tables
converse in a mix
of French, Italian, English.

Food becomes more flavorful—
baguettes crustier
cheese creamier
duck crisper
prunes soaked in rum, more exotic.

Candles burn brighter
our waiter friendlier
my lover grows younger, handsomer.

A bottle of Cote de Beaune
loosens our tongues,
night reflects stardust.


Sharon Lask Munson was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. She taught school in England, Germany, Okinawa, and Puerto Rico before driving to Anchorage, Alaska and staying for the next twenty years. She is a retired teacher, poet, coffee addict, old movie enthusiast, lover of road trips—with many published poems. You can find her at

© 2016, Sharon Lask Munson

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