Sunday, November 15, 2015
Paris - Les larmes de Marianne (The tears of Marianne)
It has been very painful for everyone to watch the horrendous events on television. My heart is broken to see that so many innocent people were hurt in my beautiful city. I was distressed to watch these areas that I know so well, being the site of such hateful acts. What has happened to our world? Growing up in Paris I was never scared, rarely saw policemen bearing firearms - I could come back home alone at night and not feel I was in any danger. Paris is a city to be happy, to be alive, to love, to understand la joie de vivre and not be afraid. Paris belongs to all of us in a way - and, as I saw in an Italian comment "Parigi è tutti noi" (Paris is all of us) the City of Light symbol, not the city of sorrow. It was unbearable for me to see these terrifying events in Paris last Friday night unfolding on television - to hear the shots, the screams at the Bataclan. Here are pictures of the Bataclan, interior and exterior, below.
"Blackpoodles, Santa Barbara
France embodies everything religious zealots everywhere hate: enjoyment of life here on earth in a myriad little ways: a fragrant cup of coffee and buttery croissant in the morning, beautiful women in short dresses smiling freely on the street, the smell of warm bread, a bottle of wine shared with friends, a dab of perfume, children paying in the Luxembourg Gardens, the right not to believe in any god, not to worry about calories, to flirt and smoke and enjoy sex outside of marriage, to take vacations, to read any book you want, to go to school for free, to play, to laugh, to argue, to make fun of prelates and politicians alike, to leave worrying about the afterlife to the dead.
No country does life on earth better than the French.
Paris, we love you. We cry for you. You are mourning tonight and we with you. We know you will laugh again, and sing again, and make love, and heal, because loving life is your essence. The forces of darkness will ebb. They will lose. They always do."
I certainly could not add anything to these beautiful words. (Drawing below by Benjamin Regnier.)