Saturday, April 6, 2013

Jean Dunard Lacquer Portrait C. 1920

Assignment:  Write a piece based upon the picture.
Art, imitating life.....just this week, in my Creative Studio Class, two of my classmates told of the new strengths they have recently acquired.  Both, left by husbands who, after years of marriage, decided that they no longer wanted to be married.....

My Inspiration - This piece, dedicated to those two beautiful friends.......

She sat, staring out the window. Her hair was perfectly coiffed, a  classic style, one that allowed her steel grey locks to float, as if waves upon a sea that gently caressed a shore at the nape of her neck.  The hair color gave only the slightest hint of her age as her face did not reveal more than a glimpse of her youth.  Her make up, as usual, was perfectly done, eyebrows arched, lipstick, the shade of the American Beauty rose.  Blue-grey pearls of magnificent quality and size nestled on each ear lobe,  punctuating the look of sheer elegance and gentility.

She sat, her arms resting gently on her knees, making for a relaxed curve to her back and a revelation of the beautiful folds that made the gown so elegant.  The gown, royal blue.  The gown, the color of the sky, the sea.  The color, her favorite perhaps for the fact that it from time immemorial has been synonymous with love, romance, strength and stability.  The very essence of who she was. Silence waved over the room, interrupted only by the  five soft chimes of the antique clock in the next room.  The clock had been a wedding gift from his parents.

She sat, a freshly picked gardenia gracing her shoulder, creamy, white, fragrant.  The gardenia, the flower of love and romance, fragile. How many times had he pinned one such as this on her waiting shoulder, perhaps as a prelude to a gentle kiss.  Her soft blue silk blouse, visible within the folds and pleats of the magnificent gown she had selected for this evening, echoed the beauty of the flower, with repeating patterns of blue gardenias throughout the garment.  Blue, the hue of power.  Power within a gracefully willowy body.  Blue Willow perhaps.

She sat, looking out her window, as her thoughts brought her to familiar places if only for short visits at a time.  A glance backwards in time that brought a tiny but perfect smile to her still youthful lips.  As she sat, she looked down at her garden, filled with bushes bursting with gardenia blooms.  The air arising from the open window brought with it the most memorable perfume experience and she thought back to the time he pinned the first corsage on her shoulder, before the waltz, before the courtship, before the proposal and the years that drifted by as if they too, were magnificent and memorable scents.

She sat, looking out at the garden of  her life on this, the evening of their fortieth wedding anniversary.  She watched as he drove away into the distance, parting after his announcement.  He no longer wished to be a married person.  It was simple and direct, his end to their once beautiful union.

She sat, and she thought about her life, her love and the gardenias.  Fragrant, fragile, memorable and short-lived. Again the silence was interrupted by ten soft chimes of the clock, this time telling her that she had sat too long.

As she arose, one by one, the delicate petals of the shoulder corsage fell to the floor, landing gently around the hem of her gown as if they were the foam left behind from the gentle ebb of a tide and she was reminded of their short moment of bloom.

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