Café Amadoure, Sarasota

By Martin Tucker

“I could be in Morocco,” I said,

sitting before the pinkstone Galleria.

He asked, “When were you in Morocco?”

I replied, “I’ve never been, but sitting here,

palm leaves carrying on in the dusk of purple liquor,

and looking at the redstone landscape,

I’m back where I never was.”


A shelter of stone whispering oasis in the heat,

Long and low and sliding under a muddled roof,

I wonder what lies inside its cool walls.

Unable to excite a native aura,

the Galleria closed its doors.

I like it now looking like a monument,

a pose of calm with hearts of palm falling on its shoulders.

A French couple opened this café across the street

where I am eating colonial quiche.

I wonder, did they buy the café for the vista?

Or is the art of imagination a hindsight of circumstance?



Martin Tucker co-founded and served as Editor-in-Chief of Confrontation for 42 years until his retirement.  He has published five collections of his poetry, and also several works of literary criticism, among them the widely-praised Literary Exile in the Twentieth Century. His reviews, essays, poetry and fiction have appeared in The New York Times Book Review, The Nation, The New Republic, The Commonweal, Chicago Jewish Forum, West African Review, Research in African Literatures, Boulevard, Epoch and elsewhere.  He served for 23 years on the Executive Board of PEN American Center and for two terms on the Governing Board of Poetry Society of America.

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