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Forgetting myself in writing her

Updated: Jun 23, 2023

A short text I wrote in Nantes, France.

She casts a spell on me here, one that I haven't felt anywhere else, a kind of elation, the ease of right decisions and hot chocolate. I feel her presence in dozens of small moments, In the cafes on the Loire, in the silence and attention in which she leafs through James Baldwin, in her last look back before she moves on. She will never be truly mine, I know, I don't want her to be. she belongs to the jazz players, to the boatmen, to the lovers, and to the heartbroken, taking comfort in her long warm lights. I tried to frame her quietly, without disturbing her. Something in me wanted to tell her that I Understand, that her story was as accurate as she read it. Nothing fits precisely in place, but everything fits just right. I know, I know she already knows what she needs to know.

I have never met another like her, The only one that makes me succumb to her clichés. The warm little cafes she invites me into, the books on her benches, her smell as she walks by, her buttery, pungent, smoky, insinuating, elusive. Her and her almost too courteous manners, her cheese wedges, her little whipped cream pastries, her sunspots, the thousands of lines written about her, the chestnut music she plays with the wind, the way she makes you walk with her. a little lost, a little wondering, longing to your old days of courage. She makes you feel like you're not the only one, whereas maybe you can be, perhaps you should. You know it will be different.

I can spend months with her. Every time I visit her, I find myself forgetting myself in writing her.


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