Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette

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Poem: "Dépaysement"

This poem came from [personal profile] iamnotgod requesting a square in my 12-31-18 card for the Untranslatable Words Bingo Fest. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] lone_cat. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

Dépaysement (French): The feeling that comes from not being in one’s home country; being a foreigner



Savoir Faire moves through the world
with a dancer's grace and a Frenchman's wit.

There is always a crisis calling to him,
another day needing to be saved.

People tell him to slow down,
take a break for once, but
he can't slow down.

When he slows down,
people get to know him,
and the better they know him,
the less they seem to like him.

Savoir Faire doesn't know why
that keeps happening, but
it does, and it hurts.

He has swashbuckled
his way across France and
moved on to Italy, Germany,
Britannia, America, and Canada.

He loves France -- he will always
be French -- but he can't stay there.

He doesn't dare wear out his welcome.

So Savoir Faire travels the world,
sweeping into and then out of the scene
as gracefully as possible. It's better this way.

He knows the feeling that comes from
not being in one’s home country,
from being a foreigner.

He learns to breathe
through the pain and
smile through the tears and
give everyone a good time.

If Savoir Faire takes a little extra care
with the refugees, no one asks him why.

After all, that's just what heroes do.

* * *


Savoir Faire (Savvy) -- Renaud Cœur is a handsome Frenchman with fair skin, shoulder-length straight brown hair, and blue eyes. He is a professional dancer with a lean fit body, not very tall. His soup friends often call him Savvy.
Origin: Act of derring-do: When a theatre caught fire during a performance, Renaud leaped into action to save members of the audience, swinging on ropes and jumping over flames. The ghost of the theatre's founder then appeared to him and bestowed superpowers.
Uniform: All black, close-fitting clothes with a dapper black coat; floppy black hat with a blue, a white, and a red ostrich plume pinned on by a gold fleur-de-lys. Standard weapons are rapier, dagger, and pistol. Savvy paints his face with stylized makeup instead of wearing a mask.
Qualities: Master (+6) Dancer, Expert (+4) Jack-of-All-Trades, Good (+2) Confidence, Good (+2) Romance.
Poor (-2) Oh, Him Again (people are often dazzled by him at first, but the more they know him, the less they like him)
Powers: Good (+2) Swashbuckling, Good (+2) Wits, Average (0) Agility, Average (0) Speed.
Vulnerability: Average (0) Sacre Bleu, Can't You See I'm French?! (avid Francophone, avid countryman; but the French flag's colors are the same as America's so that confuses people, which really pisses him off)
Motivation: Rush in to save the day.

* * *

Loneliness comes in various flavors, and it can kill people. There are ways to cope with loneliness. Know how to help a lonely friend.

Isolation, rejection, and ostracism are miserable and dangerous. Learn how to fight isolation, overcome rejection, and deal with ostracism.
Tags: community, cyberfunded creativity, family skills, fantasy, fishbowl, life lessons, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, writing
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