by Francis Ponge and translated by C.K. Williams
Kings never touch doors.
They're not familiar with this happiness: to push gently or
roughly before you one of these great, friendly panels, to turn
towards it to put it back into place - to hold a door in your arms.
The happiness of seizing one of these tall barriers to a room by
the porcelain knob of its belly; this quick hand-to hand, during
which your progress slows for a moment, your eye opens up and
your whole body adapts to its new apartment.
With a friendly hand you hold on a bit longer, before firmly
pushing it back and shutting yourself in - of which you are
agreeably assured by the click of the powerful, well-oiled latch.
Will you open and close a door in quite the same way again?
Will you pause at thresholds?
Will you note what you pass through, and where you enter,
and when you leave? Will your breath, do the same?