A city and why I am there....
Autumn sun streamed down upon my braided hair. I suppose some would have called it an Indian Summer, but that would not have cut it, so to speak, if you had been there too.
If only you had been there. You always did love it when I wore my hair in plaits and tripped about in swirly skirts. Here the canals have not the grace of Amsterdam, the somewhat majestic architectural texture. These are more organic. For all their straight lines, the algae glowed orange and green on brick banks. This place is alive.
I laughed alot then. I rushed to peer into the houses running along side the canals as the Dutch don't 'do' net curtains. Some puritain thing about having nothing to hide. The modern, post - war clever houses snuck in between the older 17th Century ones like sheepish or unforthcoming guests.
Always onward I went. Looking. Searching. This place, this place was magic, like Vermeer paintings or LSD trips. The light caught water, caught white painted window frames and burst into fragments of colour like the pansies in the window boxes.
I was a poppy, swept along by the breeze that day. I ran round bicycles, I ignored ducks, my red skirts trailed as I blazed along my course.
It was there you know.
In the centre of the city, or rather what was. Leiden's Star. A fortress pointing the rose of the compass. You should have been there with me. You should have been. I climbed up stairs that had no railing or bannister. These were hewn from stone brought by boat. A journey embedded in masonary.
If only you had been there.
I stood for a long time. Letting the light seer into my eyeballs. The church roofs glittered, the chimneys of days gone by smoked in turn and I laughed.
I knew I loved you then.