Thursday, May 31, 2007


The last day of May. It’s been raining the whole morning. The air is crisp, only slightly chilly with the heavy moisture. The thriving greens are darkened by the clouded sky; grass, leaves, flowers, they all put on more mature airs, as if they’d already have the backing of the full strength of summer. Well, they’re almost right.

Birds fly low, crossing the streets at a mere one-foot or two from the ground. Don’t they know, can’t they see, these beautiful marvels, how we rush everywhere on our wheels, how big we are, and inconsiderate? I slow down, my heart jumping, ready to step madly on the brakes, every time I see a minute sparrow or a glossy merle darting from one shrub to the next, on the opposite side of the street.

A soft thud, that was the only sign, when the car I was in at the time hit a sparrow on the motorway. It was ten years ago, but I’ll never forget it.

Maybe as redemption, I have a little birdhouse in my back yard. My visitors are sparrows, merles, doves. I feed them seeds in winter, which they share with squirrels. This year, only one flat is occupied, by a family of merles. I can hear the chicks chirping frantically, while their parents continuously come home with juicy worms in their beaks. I haven’t seen them yet, but I like to imagine there are three of them.

The lilac’s twigs are bending almost to the raspberry thicket below, the weight of the lavish clusters of purple flowers tripled by dripping water. Still, they send their heavy hypnotic fragrance to the four corners of the world. Oh, I have a lush garden, just slightly out of control…

Daniel, today we’ll have the tea together, outside, under the porch roof. The rain will have stopped by then, and perhaps a bird musician will send his trills into the clear air.
We’ll sit next to each other. You’ll pour the tea into the white and gold porcelain cups, careful to hide your emotion behind those fragrant bergamot vapours, and those perfect manners, and that witty sparkle in your eyes.
But soon, you’ll lower your guard of self-assurance. Your smile will become softer, soon you’ll allow your cautious warmth to permeate your words, your gestures. Our hands will brush occasionally, ever so lightly, in our suddenly clumsy handling of cups, and saucers, and biscuits. We will laugh at this, and your turquoise eyes will sing a song with all the unspoken words of love.
Soon, you will reach out, as if to get something from the service table behind me, the sugar maybe, and, for a brief moment, your face will hide in my hair. Is it the lilac or the Bvlgari, you’ll ask yourself, longing to linger in there for a just a second more. But you’ll retreat. I shall not abide this. I will have felt your hot breath on my neck and, now that it’s gone, I will feel cold. I’ll turn my head, quickly, and you’ll be there. Your mouth, fierce, resolute. You’ll kiss me.
Oh, how you’ll kiss me, my darling.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007


Oh, such is the mystery…
This lunatic, this uranographer,
this mad mountebank,
set upon drawing the paths of stars,
set upon tracing the tiniest of lights,
up there, in the black depths of the sky,
has instead drawn my life.
I am now hanging between Alpheratz and Mirach,
in the constellation of the Princess,
How fragile my string is.
A mere breath could send it swaying,
one light-year this way, one the other.
And to think of all those stellar winds,
blowing, howling.
Such is the mystery.
I am still there,
Watching you sleep.

Copyright © Vesper L. All rights reserved.

Monday, May 28, 2007

My Heart Only

In the orchard of pink grapefruit, I walk.
What gleams, what sparkles, so lively, so slyly,
In the hot well of this darkness?
No stars in the high, no glow worms in my skirts.
Only your eyes, your glare of sapphire.
Your mighty roar echoes for me alone,
Sweet and bitter.
Do not devour me, lion of my heart.
Let us sacrifice this ripe grapefruit.

Copyright © Vesper L. All rights reserved.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

My Beautiful Lion of Lyon

Here it is, my beautiful lion. Thank you, Seamus, for letting me adopt it.

His name is Alexander. The poem is coming...

Friday, May 25, 2007

Celluloid Time

I recently bought a DVD with five of Marlene Dietrich’s movies. I did it mainly because I wanted Morocco.

Morocco (1930) is one of my favourite movies. It was done 77 years ago! Unbelievable! A lifetime. Marlene Dietrich and Gary Cooper were both 29 years old, at the peak of their splendour. The love story is beautiful, with all the right romantic ingredients, the Foreign Legion, the desert, the (almost) lost heroine who finds herself by finding and giving in to a simple love.

I used to love old movies, especially black & white classics, with the great names of the early cinematography rolling on their titles. Rudolph Valentino, Marlene Dietrich, Gary Cooper, Errol Flynn, Clark Gable. I used to seek the masterpieces of the Europeans, Fellini, Antonioni, Bergman. I still love all of them, and one of my dreams is to find the time to quietly watch a classic Western, cuddled with a mug of coffee, on a calm Sunday morning.

But, lately, a strange feeling briefly shadows my heart, when I happen upon such a film. I cannot help but think that all those people on the screen, all those laughing, crying, loving, living, fighting, lively people, even the children, are most certainly long dead. I quickly chase the thought away, but I find myself hopefully calculating how old they would have been now, and somehow find a foolish comfort in telling myself that they couldn’t have lived anyway to be one hundred, or older, or that the youngest of them might still be alive.

Time is unbelievably cruel, its hands devastating on our faces, on our dreams, on our hearts, on our lives.

We are vain. Whether we admit it or not, whether we are aware of it or not, we all seek immortality. (Will keeping a web log give you a modest shot at it?) I admit, I am afraid. Therefore, I try to spare my feelings, carefully, deliberately avoiding thoughts of age, and death, and loss. Better to look to the future. Seek the youth, the new, the pleasure, the simple pleasures. Watch the new stuff, listen to the new music. Do as much as possible. Do not think about it.

I was, am, and always will be a movie buff. Films represent a reference for me. I love the actors. They are some of the few fortunate people who – if they truly believe in their art - can live many different lives in the course of one. But, purposely, I will always think of Gary Cooper as he is in Morocco. Errol Flynn will always be, for me, Captain Blood.

Gérard Philippe, dead at 37, and James Dean, gone at 24, while listening to the engine of his Porsche, have both, in an ironic way, cheated Time. They will always be young, on that powerful and fragile celluloid. No effort. They will always be Fanfan la Tulipe and Jim Stark.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


A whisper at vesper,
Soothing the soft new leaves of maples.
Tendrils of gold and blood,
shyly reaching into the dark ewes of the sky.
At zenith, a single patch of sapphire,
The brilliance of your eyes, not seeing me, not seeing me.
You don’t know of me, my lover.
Where is our great big life?
Gently leaving, there, on that dirt road.

© Copyright Vesper

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Is It Worth It?

Can there be art, can there be creation, I ask myself, without self-sacrifice? Or sacrifice of others? Can one juggle between being a mom, and being a (good) wife, and trying to write, (and going to an utterly unrelated workplace), without loosing oneself in the process? I’m not even such a good juggler, because – at least until now – I’ve always put my duties to others first.

I am almost always split. I cannot entirely enjoy the glee in my older daughter’s eyes, her innocent enthusiasm when she talks to me, because – often - while I look at her, and while I hear her voice and her laughter, I am not fully seeing and not really listening. I am often thinking about the yarn I’m spinning. I sit in her room, while she’s exercising her reading, but many times I have a pen and paper in my hand, and I scribble away my thoughts. I’m physically present to guide her homework in her first year of school. However, only a small part of my mind is there.
Same with my younger daughter. I would make a snowman with her, or dance, or read fairy tales, or build a castle, and at the same time think of a deep love scene that makes me float with the flurries in my stomach.

Yet, paradoxically, and without false modesty, I have not encountered a more dedicated mother, except maybe for my own. My children come first. Always. Hence the constant torment, the guilt, the feelings of lost time, the longing, the desire to witness every moment of my daughters’ childhood, my need for a romantic love, the whirlwind of all these and of the daily chores.

Guilt-ridden, I keep telling myself that I should keep the thinking and the writing for when I’m doing unimportant stuff. Like cooking, for example, or gardening, or being at work.

One needs not to be published to be a Writer – and I’m not saying that only because I haven’t published anything yet. Publishing depends on luck, and discipline, and perseverance, and friends of friends, and luck… A Writer you are or you are not, with your whole being, and, when you are, you have inside you an all-consuming flame. But could you burn, could you loose irremediably your “ordinary,” your “real” life, in it?

Oh, Daniel, I ache for you. Where are you?…

Thursday, May 10, 2007

My Brilliant Career

Like Sybylla from “My Brilliant Career,” I’ve always thought that I belonged to the world of literature, the world of art…

When I thought of myself in the future I imagined myself writing, writing, and writing. At twelve, I used to write in longhand, in copy-books. The crisp smell of pristine paper and of freshly sharpened Koh-i-noor pencils still brings memories of awe, of something wonderful about to happen.

I saw the movie first, then read the book by Miles Franklin. It is one of my favourite books and movies.

I could and, at the same time, could not understand how Sybylla chose to reject Sam Neill. Ha, I didn’t call him Harry Beecham. For me, because it was played by Sam Neill, the character acquired a huge likeability, which absolved him of any guilt of being a man of his upbringing and times. I had a crush on him, of course, which softened only over the years and still makes my heart flutter whenever I see him on a screen. An old lover, which I am still in love with. In my mind, I was urging Sybylla to accept his clumsy proposal. My heart sank painfully when she did not. But I admired her, for she had recognized the illusory romance and had chosen the harder path. She had maintained her independence at the cost of her heart. Or maybe she had recognized her true heart and acted upon it.

I sometimes wish now that I had done the same. I find an excuse in the fact that, at the time I first saw the movie, I was very young and my head was bursting with hopes and all kind of expectations for my… brilliant life. I had big plans and elaborate steps on the staircase to their achievement. Of course I wanted it all. Not just write about exciting things but live them too. I often did it for the wrong people, for disappointing relationships on which I wasted too much time and energy.

It is considered to be an Aries’s characteristic to trustingly try again, once the hurt is forgot.

My brilliant (writing) career went bung before it even started.

But, Daniel, as long as one can still fall in love, hope is strong.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The Beginning

I was born.

Smashing start to an autobiography.

When and where, it doesn’t matter too much. Not for what I intend to write here. It was sufficiently long ago to allow me to acquire a certain perspective. Yet, recently enough to fuel my belief that magnificent things can still happen.

The place, that’s another matter. I will say only this: most of what I am is because of that place; most of what I am not and probably never will be is also because of that place. It is a love-hate relationship of which I don’t really care to talk. It’s a wound that is best forgotten, if I am to try to do now all that I was too afraid, too shy, and too stupid to do in the past.

Apart from this, I’ve had a very loving and caring family. Somewhat overbearing and overly protective. I’ve always felt very safe. Sometimes, I’ve also felt suffocated. Yet, I don’t blame anything on anyone. I love them all beyond measure. All of this, if anything, is my doing.

(One needs to be bloody arrogant to post one’s thoughts on the Internet and expect other people will be interested in reading them.
That, and bloody desperate.
Also, an exhibitionist. If all you wanted were to keep a diary, you could do it privately, on your own computer. Why bare your soul in front of strangers?…)

Most of my dreams come from the “art of illusion.” That is, literature and cinema. There is nothing that feels closer to my soul, nothing that brings me more happiness than the feats of imagination.
Thus, before I got around to live any real life, I had already lived many imaginary lives. All very romantic and highly adventurous. What can real life do but pale in comparison with that?

I am an Aries.
I can carry my own suitcases and open my own doors, but I can’t breathe without romance. I need my knight in shining armour, my hero to yearn for in my heart and mind.
I live for the written and the moving illusions.
I am a perfectionist; that’s why it is taking me so long to write anything – I have to polish it to perfection, and then I have to polish it a bit more.
Summer swirls me with a weird feeling of end of time, of open spaces where there blows a wind of unexplained melancholy.
I deeply dislike wasting time, and broken promises, and gossip, and double standards, and people who are untrue.
I have the sea in my heart. I was probably a mermaid in another life.

This blog is about me, about my tangle of thoughts, my obsession with writing and time...