Thursday, October 6, 2011

Dear love, another glorious day, sun is shining, everybody's happy, cats, remaining chickens, me, and I hope you. A forestalling of winter, with such fine weather, and we're still in Daylight Savings Time, for another month. There is something simply wrong about darkness coming at 4:30 - but let me not get ahead of myself. Live in the moment. Breathe.

Sweetheart, oh sweetheart, where do I begin. I've made a discovery - just yesterday - of the wonders of Pompeiian erotic art - so much richer & finer for my imagination than lurid buzzed-in sojourns at the Bunny Ranch. (Though such drivebys have their effects.) No, now my mind, as I lie prone, is filled with honeyed sunlight, silken divans, smoothskinned lovers proffering lines of poetry, cool sips of wine, grapes plucked from vines tumbling against a wall, powerful lithe lovers commanding, longlimbed, heavy-rumped damsels submitting, both, given their arabesque positions, evincing unusually placid, dispassionate expressions...

And so I had my sublime moments with you, darling, as I traveled the world, and through time, and sometimes there was more than just you, and an awful lot of mentally colorful talk - but darling, it's because I haven't got all day, in fact I had a tart shell in the oven pre-baking and so I had 25 minutes, tops. Doubtless I looked a bit heavy-thighed & rumped, longlimbed not so much but shortwaisted (pear-shaped both, the pale frescoed obliging women and me) - and my expression - far from, towards the end, composed. And that was me - solo odalisque! Well, no, not really.

Ah, the light is honeyed just now darling - were you but here - we could express our love in the most beautiful delightful ancient way possible, the way they knew how to do - what - some 65 generations ago, at least? That was the sort of groggy, batty calculation I did in my head as I waked in wee hours in darkness, tripped into consciousness out of some disjointed dream, doing the math on how many generations in 2000 years... I'm not going to doublecheck the math. I suppose my point now simply being how very fresh & immediate & delightful those Pompeiian images are - so long ago - what a terrible tragedy, the destruction of what must have been, for the prosperous there, a marvelous city - and I'm glad that here I am all these aeons later, regarding these images on my computer screen, and remembering, and imagining, and thinking of you, and who knows, perhaps the spirits of those ancient, timeless, recursive lovers joyfully re-encounter each other again, in the form of us, even if you're not around, not with me anyway on my divan, but I know you think of me wherever you are, you on yours...

Ah, so what else darling? I would observe that the French in some sense had to cultivate a taste & tradition for cholesterol-busting vin rouge, because as I type, I am in the midst of the various steps that comprise the making of a pear frangipane tart. (I couldn't find the French intern's recipe, and briefly considered emailing a mutual office-friend (at the time) - the three of us hung out together, and this friend too received a copy - but it's been so long since I contacted XC, despite a number of trips to the city in intervening years, that I felt that it would be a little rude to email her out of the blue - hey remember that pear frangipane tart Anne-Lise made? If you still have the recipe, would you mind emailing it to me? Oh but don't go through any bother... Of course it would be a bother! Who would have that recipe at their fingertips?)

Ah, so anyway, I found another recipe online, but the P.F. Tart process ground to a halt because I ran out of butter. Mind you, darling - this is a single tart. I had already used an entire stick - 8 Tablespoons - of butter - all I had left - and in fact the pâte sablée - that is, the tart shell - called for nine T. And then there's the frangipane layer, of ground almonds, sugar, misc. extracts - and another 6 tablespoons of butter.

One nine- or ten-inch tart - incorporating in various ways, nearly two sticks of butter! And pears then, poached in water, sugar, cinammon stick & vanilla - and no, that fruit "share" doesn't counteract all the butter & sugar.

I've rarely thought about fine pastry quite so carefully - and I did go for a vigorous walk today, and did most of a workout...

I will never devour quantities of pastry again... well I am a reformed soul, I don't now either... but having thought through what that recipe entails, we will be having the tiniest slivers at a time. Which is absolutely fine - it's a treat, a sublime delicacy, meant to be savored - so I'm not worried on that score.

And that's it, dearest, for now, the light is past its Golden Era, in the Dark Ages now, gone flat and gray and black & white after all that honey and gold.

I speak only of the cozy aerie, where the light has changed. Because you know...

slam the brakes on some metaphor that I won't be able to pull off, about the flame in my heart, glowing embers, no - not embers, brilliant shafts of light -

ah, leave that be sweetheart - very many many kisses,
yours, Belle

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