Frédérique COSNIER: “Poetry Club”

Frédérique COSNIER is a french author. She writes poetry and prose, most of all published online. She also does some readings and performs on stage with the french electro duet « Li ». Recently they worked with Dan Fante and created a musical reading of some of Dan’s poems, in Besançon, France.


translated by Irene Coen Provost / Annie-France Mistral



Meanwhile, I had
drunk − quite a few glasses
so that lying sprawled over the couch
I couldn’t be sure
I was covering
all my flaws

I was back from the Gallery
Annex I had been
through the exhibit
with Bertollo but my thoughts were on

Oh Bobby Your acrylic cyan blue
sweater knitted as your mom
had surely inoculated you with
the taste for unique pieces

I never had a live-in dressmaker myself
Had to flip through
Marie-Claire on my own
to find appropriate colors but never not in the least
came to grips with tones

You were my taste
You were my tang
My own little wolf from
contemporary steppes

My artist’s studio, babe, is the poetry club
At my poetry club, you see, things are less clear
There’s debris Pages
from magazines Insignificant novels
A well-bred gal
I’m not
Our end you see, taste is imported

This evening in the Gallery Annex
the crowd had
the gift of the pompous gab
Befitting, this community of beings
connected by gazes converging on canvasses

During the opening, beauty to be had everywhere in sight
Come, let’s go to the lounge
Refurbished rooms
How do you like my curtainless bay windows?
The sea we overlook
Or is it a river in the night
The reflections adjourn us: glass in hand we dream on
Time is so on our side

Tonight the gallery will stay open
till all hours We will dance on the
Oh so posh polished concrete floor
Free as in a meadow
where trespassing’s no longer punished Everything is
within reach Even for you Bertollo
who casually let out Oh, you know, me and contemporary art

I wore my flea market jacket
the one my mother gave me
before I killed her

One more glass of this red that goes down smoothly
Lightheaded Could stay on here
in the company of these gigantic
They don’t speak

On the sly we helped ourselves to crackers and the
finger buffet I took more than I could handle
And Bertollo behind the scenes
kept bringing me more pinching my behind

Hidden under the palm leaves
by a full-size portrait stuck directly on the wall
I watched this excessive face
Like a character out of a Philippe Therrier Hermann scene
A Celadon for the taking in a forest of greens
The woman is beautiful, overly rigid in her gait
A sheer movie star on a sheer cliff background

Once the bag-in-box reds were finished
they brought out the bottles: the last ones
A young man at the decks was spinning sounds
Felt so good, sweeping through the air of a room of

At my poetry club there’s
every kind of dancing you can think of and I can wear all kinds of costumes
But without you I know full well that at some point I muck things up
I walk around in a bathing suit among well-to-do people and then
That’s how I’m found early morn’
wrapped on the couch
around Bertollo
I must have suggested Come finish off the crackers at my place Babe
I won’t mention contemporary art

I thought of Rohmer I thought of Titian
of Richter Falk and Gerhard Richter
Pieces in grey

I thought of how death underlies every day
We cover it with just one hand
Not much

I thought of how your mom didn’t need to
put her head in the oven
She found another way out

I said to Bertollo who was talking
to me way too much How he bored me with his foreplay
Stop your novels Honey I like it when you’re horizontal
And your teeth are


Author photo (by Willy Roch). The photo that accompanies the poem “Poetry club” is from Antonio Catarino.

Translation of the poem from French to American was made by Irene Coen and Annie-France Mistral. Annie-France has translated some of Dan Fante’s novels into French.

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