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Patrice Desbiens

Patrice Desbiens (born 1948) is a Francophone Canadian poet. He was born in Timmins, Ontario and began his career as a journalist. Since making his literary debut in 1972, he has been regarded as one of Canada’s most successful French-language poets. He is associated with the publishing house Éditions Prise de parole and the Théâtre du Nouvel-Ontario in Sudbury, Ontario. He has received many awards for his poetry, including the Prix Champlain in 1997 for Un pépin de pomme sur un poêle à bois and the Prix de poésie Terrasses Saint-Sulpice-Estuaire for La Fissure de la fiction in 1998. He was also a finalist for the Governor General's Prize in 1985, for his book Dans l'après-midi cardiaque.

The Age of Tender Love Songs

The age of tender love songs
is gone

A tear has coagulated under
the skin

Mirrors break
reflecting the
perfection of madness

I am a Stranger Superimposed

I am a stranger superimposed
on flowered curtains

This pen is noisy
scratching like an old
Ink Spots record

I am a dead baby under
hamburger skies

The smokers breathe
thru me

I forgot one of my legs
on the bus

I came here
I am here now
and remain faithfully

the poem goes on

The Road to Panic

The road to panic
is so

The priest arrives
in a police car
to administer the
last sacraments

He speaks like
Elmer Fudd and
waves his crucifix around
like a .38

suntan faces
line the
crime scene

Electric Gazelle

Electric gazelle
beside me

have travelled
the troubled space
of her body

Who is she
what does she

Ask her



From The Art of Disappearing
by Patrice Desbiens
© 2017 Patrice Desbiens
Published by Ekstasis Editions