The Lady Ferlinghetti Met At A Bistro in San Francisco  


One grand boulevard with trees

one grand cafe in sun….

                                    Lawrence Ferlinghetti



Larry may have called her

Monet’s lily floating in  time

because she wore an eyelet blouse


with  hair crimped and hanging

over its collar

like willow shade back-lit by the sun.


Nothing Wi-Fi about her. The cloud

was summer lace,

or a mind storing

other  lives she had lived

in old world cities


and sent home creased

on onion skin.

The envelope

stamped with bird postage

and sealed with her saliva. Sea water

rolled off the tongue


that had canto’d

the pines of  Rome, the spires of Prague, the green

                       crossing at Giverny.




7 replies on “The Lady Ferlinghetti Met At A Bistro in San Francisco  ”

Hi Francina

So good hearing from you!! Thank for this lovely comment on my poem. I deeply appreciate your kindness and interest in my work.

Take care,



I have come back to this poem and read it and reread it so many times in the past couple of days. It transforms the reader.

“The cloud

was summer lace,”

Gorgeous. It speaks to all the senses and calls me back again and again.

The closing lines are dynamic. Because they were italicized I wondered if
if they were a quote so I googled and got a huge kick out of the only link
that addressed the exact lines:

“Results for the pines of Rome, the spires of Prague, the green crossing at giverny poem (without quotes):
The Lady Ferlinghetti Met At A Bistro in San Francisco – The Peaceful ……/the-lady-ferlinghetti-met-at-a-bistro-in-san-francisco/

2 days ago – … with her saliva. Sea water. rolled off the tongue. that had canto’d. the pines of Rome, the spires of Prague, the green. crossing at Giverny.”

You have collected so much history, poetry and art in those beautiful lines. In addition to all of the above, you
caused me to check to see if Ferlinghetti is still alive, and by gosh, he is. He was 99 on March 24, 2018. I read that he still spends time at City Lights.

What a spectacular journey this spectacular poem offers. I love it!

Thank you!



Hi Sarah

So glad you enjoyed this poem and I thank you for the beautiful commentary and encouragement you offered
toward this piece. It makes me feel humbled and accomplished. This poem actually came about several years ago when I heard Ferlinghetti on a pod cast. He make up a small poem about drinking coffee in a S.F. bistro. And that led me to think about who he had met in his past and maybe some one like the fictitious lady I describe in this poem. The last lines are simply places she has been and wrote about in her poetry. Yet, “the pines of Rome” are the famous ones along the ancient roman road, The Appian Way in Rome, Prague is known as “the city of Spires” and of course that green bridge that appears in several of Monet’s famous water lily paintings at Giverny is in its own way an artistic landmark. That’s probably whey I italicized them. Again, many thanks for this!

Hi Craig

So glad you read the poem and enjoyed the line. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment. I sincerely appreciate it!

My best to you both,


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