Cyrano De Bergerac, Jose Ferrer, and a Poem

One summer night, around 1965, I returned home around midnight, and turned on the television to catch the last few minutes of the movie version of “Cyrano de Bergerac”, with Jose Ferrer.

I was so caught up in the rhythm and mood of that final scene that I wrote down the following poem as fast as I could write.

A Summer Evening Lives Into The Night

The subtle shade of laurel leaves abides
The red of roses laughing at their side,
The brambles’ acridness,
Survives the petal’s kiss,
The petals’ sweetness,
The scent of grass fresh crushed,
In gentle drifting through the visions,
Drifting through the languid rush
Of moons and clouds in shadowy collisions;
A star through velvet shifting,
The hush of breathing lifting to the night,
The lightness of your lips,
The caustic after-image of their touch,
The laughter of my fingertips
Dancing down your face.

Memories in dreams go dancing,
Clutching hand-in-hand, it seems,
The blush of cheeks serene enhancing
Red remembering of green.

So roses wilt and fall from too much laughing.
The green of laurel leaves out lives them all;
The summer’s flame, the frost of early fall,
The winter’s call begetting
The blame in each sun setting,
The gaping spring raped green
By passion’s budding breath,
The falling-fashioned ,hushed serene
Of age,
Of death.

– Sitaram

(circa 1965)

I recently purchased the DVD version of the movie, and saw once again that final scene.

In his final moments, before death, Cyrano speaks of all his laurels and roses being taken from him.


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