18. Dec, 2016

Poetry and Light

She stood transfixed in front of the canvas, with its playful  interweaving of lines, stars, moons, red and  blue  circles: she loved it all.

Her father looked around, perplexed. He was not familiar with abstract painting. A Kachina statue took his fancy. The weird  thing, with its painted blues, stood on a small shelf, glowing.

Mirò gave her such a joy.

Her father was a child on an adventure trip. He sat in front of the pictures,  turned his head and watched from different angles to decide if he liked what he saw.

The Chiostro was a Renaissance jewel, just beside the Church Santa Maria  della Pace. They wandered in the inner yard, flavouring paintings from Mirò's Mallorcan years and listened to classical music. The  caffetteria was refined. They sat at a table and ordered coffee and cake.

Her father  read a satirical book. She only  pretended to read her poetry: she loved  watching her  father's  neat hands, as he leafed  through the book, amused. 

The waitress was curteous  and open. She smiled and chatted to them in a natural way.

Every single detail was part of a silent agreement between her and her father.

It had been months, maybe a whole year, since their  last outing.

"Do you like your cake? Try mine too," he said. "It's  chestnut jam. "

"I'd  rather stick to  my  blueberry tart," she said.

A tall, slim woman in a blue sleeveless dress sat  close by, sipping cappuccino, while toying with her smartphone.

A man in his thirties came in with two young women, who spoke in a Spanish accent.

"You know, " he said, "doing the job l love is like being on holiday all the time." He was a film production assistant and travelled a lot.

Bits and pieces, stringless words floated in the air. She  captured just a few,  and let the others slip away.

Raphael's  Sibyls were visible from the big bay window in the cafe loft.

Fluid and lyrical, the  four Sibyls  had their  place on the  arch, above the  second Cappella Chigi  in Santa  Maria  della  Pace. They were  a bridge between  Pagan and Christian times, their  colours soft and ethereal like clouds.