Friday, January 28, 2011

nocturne in gray and gold

My darling, the pale gleam of sun through winter blur is like the headlight of a jet approaching in the fog, or a ferry boat trawling through vast depths towards its berth in a murky harbor. I stand on the dock in crepuscular dim waiting for you to alight, key to our room at the S. B. Hotel tucked safely in my pocket. Winter cold shocks my cheeks, but I know that as soon as I step into your embrace, you hold me tight and cover my face with kisses, we'll both be warm again. Come darling, the hotel's just around the corner. I've got a fire going in the grate, casting the room in rosy flickering light, and a pot of goulash is warming on the stove. You must be famished. Let me fix you a bowl, some silken noodles submerged in heady beef and broth. Come sit here, dearest, I'll have some too. It is a rare joy to gaze upon your beloved shining face, the sun coming out again after a long, long pall. My love, here is a steaming hot bowl for you, along with a fork, and here now too - a kiss. Tell me about your voyage, we'll lie down together after.

James McNeill Whistler, Nocturne in Gray and Gold, Snow in Chelsea, 1876, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, MA

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