Moulin Rouge

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In France, it’s just an ordinary name:

.                             it means “red mill,”

.                   a place to bring your grain;

.        back then, the massive millstone’s rumble

.                             thundered to the rafters,

kicking up a storm of dust that plastered

.

sweaty skin with shards of grain and dimmed

.                             the lamplight’s shine

.                   and made the shadows spin.

.         Back then, a different bump and grind

.                             brought patrons there:

a meal inviting them to taste, not stare.

.

Now, faster than it takes the feminine

.                               farine to rise

.                   into the masculine—le pain—

.         lithe dancers swirl before our eyes.

.                             These graceful nudes

bake up a more exhilarating food.

.

© 2008 Al Hudgins

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