Index: Portugal


Three Portuguese Vignettes

Shepelavy_Portugal_2 Shepelavy_Portugal_1

Bebe’s corduroy voice — a Chesterfield burr —
unspools, old ropes give way,
and a drawbridge drops across the sunken court.

She stayed behind to man the parapet
while the last course of the movable feast
played out as a styrofoam farce.

We slept in the old chapel
littered with espionage scripture.
Stations of the jet set,
gilded frames ajar —

Every Tuk-tuk driver in Lisbon will tell you
about the earthquake on All Saint’s Day
that leveled the churches
but spared the brothels.

So — Cast your fishnets
and collect billets in the chapel of bones.
Vacuum the apse —
AstroTurf the courtyard —
Hoist the orange extension cord high!
Draw the current —
Scaffold the nave —
Drop the cloth —
Nail it across walls
whose scored stones
give history & glamour
familiar grip —
while the plaster dust remains
as timeless as the air
that forms the changeless notes
she pumps through the old organ.