You didn’t think I’d miss a chance to quote from “Le Manteau de Pascal,” did you? I had to go read it mid-way through the coat sewing. Here’s the whole thing and here’s the parts I thought about:

A Jacob’s ladder with hovering empty arms, an open throat,
a place where a heart might beat if it wishes,
pockets that hang awaiting the sandy whir of a small secret,
folds where the legs could be, with their kneeling mechanism,
the floating fatigue of an after-dinner herald,
not guilty of any treason towards life except fatigue,
a skillfully cut coat, without chronology,
filled with the sensation of being suddenly completed —
as then it is, abruptly, the last stitch laid in, the knot bit off —

the neck like a vase awaiting its cut flower,
a skirting barely visible where the tucks indicate
the mild loss of bearing in the small of the back,
the grammar, so strict, of the two exact shoulders —
and the law of the shouldering —
and the chill allowed to skitter up through,
and those crucial spots where the fit cannot be perfect —
oh skirted loosening aswarm with lessenings,
with the mild pallors of unaccomplishment,
flaps night-air collects in,

Now I’m going to go around muttering, “Oh skirted loosening aswarm with lessenings” all day.