i.m. Paul Leon

"`He was courteous but very silent. He was good with children. His eyesight may have been impaired, but he had an ear open to the world." This is how Alex Leon recalls James Joyce, who, between 1928 and 1939 was an almost daily visitor to his family's flat on the rue Casimir-Perier in Paris. Joyce came to consult with Alex's father, Paul Leon..." 'The Irish Times', Thu, Oct 29, 1998

 

A way, a lone, a last, a loved

Paul Léon was murdered in 1942,

In Auschwitz concentration camp,

Oświęcim, Poland.

A Jew, he was Joyce’s friend,

The Joyce of Dublin & Galway,

Trieste, Zurich & Paris

And, off course, Anna L’Liffey,

She who riverrun on & on,

Even till the Finnegans’ wake.

Joyce lived in Paris for twenty years

He was so poor but everytime he had money

He always paid for everyone in every bar,

Every taxi, every restaurant.

Paul Léon heard Joyce’s leery voice

Echo

As he drank his white wine

On his day of Atonement.

And, like Molly,

Faithful sorry you was

At the ten year break

Between you two.

He returned to Paris

To sort out Joyce’s papers,

After he was dead,

And the Gestapo arrested you in ‘42:

You ended your life

A shadow

Of that other dangerous, murdered Jew.

 

◄ a wuthering whispering wind

Under the Moon: An American contrapuntal ►

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