The Gypsy found herself alone this December 24th for the first time in decades. It was at once lonely and exhilarating as she pondered her choices for the evening. The first order of business was to dress as she wanted to feel, fix her hair to celebrate that feeling, dig out the gold to trim herself and finally put on a face.
A face in this case to present a facade; an illusion for the masses. Little did she know that this night would not be as she pictured it (a solitary desolate memory) but rather a sign of things to come. A sign of hope and a sign of freedom and enlightenment. All from a single unexpected encounter. She headed out to where there would be people and noise, music and lights…. and here is what happened that night.
The strain of wartime music,
Played softly in the background
In contrast with the present,
The harsher, modern sound.
Swaying to the softness,
Escaping here and now,
Simple times, simple ways,
A song of love and hope.
‘La Vie en Rose’ could only be
So sung in this reality
By none other than the
Stranger as he moves up close to me.
Sensing more than seeing does,
Eyes sweep to catch this sight,
But nowhere is this singing man
Who greets me from the night.
With sultry words and voice so clear,
Defying ages absolutely.
Backwards, downwards, my eyes sweep
To finally catch a glimpse.
Lyrics filter through the air
With sweetness and with grace
Before I see the memories
That are etched upon his face.
Faded blue by time that’s past
His eyes seem not quite focused,
‘La Vie en Rose’ so softly sung,
Alluring, not unnoticed.
Swirls of present pass us by
As minutes seem like hours,
And in his song I melt myself,
Taking in his powers.
A grand finale does not come,
Though one arm moves up slightly.
‘La Vie en Rose’ has played out,
His audience delighted.
The war it took its toll I see,
Somewhat so encumbered,
Peaking out of his shirt so white
Reveals to me his numbers.
And yet with time and through the pain,
He sits to serenade.
A lovely woman all alone,
Appreciates he came.
To sing, to talk, perhaps to dance
So slowly and with innocence.
The chair rotating round the floor,
Forgetting all, remembering more.
The past crawls backwards,
Bright lights glare, present moment over.
‘La Vie en Rose’ contained for now
By he who is a
Soldier.copyright – 2010 Lesley Fletcher – ‘5 Pillars of the Gyspy’
Click HERE to – Enjoy a recent recording of ‘La Vie en Rose’ by Rachael Leahcar – It is a beautiful haunting sweet version of the classic by Edith Piaf. It gives me chills and reminds me of that simpler time – a time of love and hope.I will remember those who have given their lives for our freedom.