When Ravel lay dying the ghosts
Of dead princesses besieged him
Each one asking why he’d written
No pavanne for her. Was she not dead?
Or did he think she was not a princess?
“Please,” he cried silently, “I am trying
To make my peace with God.”
Better, the princesses said
To make your peace with us.
Seeing he had no choice he rose
And lived another thirty-four years.
Dying again, the princesses came
Saying that, for Couperin and Bolero,
They had forgiven him. A passing seraph
Muttered “But really, is Bolero music?”