Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Il faut meubler l'interieur de soi-même

I don't care to know the hour
'Cause it's passing anyway
I don't have to see tomorrow 
'Cause I saw it yesterday 
Though I'm living and I'm singing
And although my hands still play
Soon enough it will be over
Cause tomorrow is today

Reading, as I was this morning, Derek Hill's eulogy of Roderick Cameron (my copy of Remembering Rory is dedicated to Natasha and Stephen) I came across a phrase "il faut meubler l'interieur de soi-même" that fit exactly with what I had been thinking recently – not that I think in French, of course, but am trying to do so in Italian and non è facile let me tell you.

I had been thinking was how impersonal our flat had become – neutral ground for the interaction of two very dissimilar personalities that have gently rubbed each other smooth over the last thirty-odd years – and smooth seemed to be the best thing I could say about the living room – an equivalent, in decorating terms, of an Aesthetic heroine, pale, wan and terribly, terribly tasteful.

"Someone ought to be able to enjoy these" said the neighbor, handing me a bunch of zinnias as I opened the door to him. "We're going away for a few days and wondered if you'd like them." And enjoy them we did, for the few days they lasted. I took a picture of the zinnias – their colors a lodestar in the grey morning light in the grey room and, idling away a second or two before my coffee was ready, took another of their reflection in the tabletop. Just like that, the lens having focussed on the layer of dust, I had myself an image somewhat emblematic of my mood of the past few months - seeing, with all the attendant obscurities, through a glass darkly.

This grey morning, ceilinged as I am – embower'd going too far, perhaps – in morning glories and enchanted by chuckling hummingbirds, I feel it's time to write again and perhaps, equally importantly, it being as much a milestone as beginning to write, to redecorate the living room.

I know ikat is faddish and everyone has it, and it really sucks to admit this, but we have two ikat-look brocade pillows in both of our newly–favorite colors, Schiaparelli pink and orange – zinnia colors if ever there were any – on the newish sofa. Much as with the zinnias, the new pillows light up the doldrums the living room and have suggested a solution to a problem we've been discussing seemingly forever – new curtains. A decision, finally, was made and the fabric  ordered and is on its way to the workroom and will return to hang at the windows as curtains of a glowing fuchsia linen - emblematic, if curtains can be said to be, of new paths, if only neural ones.

Il faut meubler l'interieur de soi-même, indeed.

Those of you who recognize the quotation beginning this post as being from Billy Joel's Tomorrow is Today will understand where I have been over the summer and if you do not, it doesn't matter. I shall return, amongst other things, to my Circles within Circles theme over the coming weeks.