Alicante Lullaby

by Sylvia Plath

In Alicante they bowl the barrels Bumblingly over the nubs of the cobbles Past the yellow-paella eateries, Below the ramshackle back-alley balconies, While the cocks and hens In the roofgardens Scuttle repose with crowns and cackles. Kumquat-colored trolleys ding as they trundle Passengers under an indigo fizzle Needling spumily down from the wires: Alongside the sibliant narhor the lovers Hear loudspeakers boom From each neon-lit palm Rumbas and sambas no ear-flaps can muffle. O Cacophony, goddess of jazz and of quarrels, Crack-throated mistress of bagpipes and cymbals, Let be your con brios, your capricciosos, Crescendos, cadenzas, prestos and pretissimos, My head on the pillow (Piano, pianissimo) Lullayed by susurrous lyres and viols.