In September, David and I returned to Paris for a week of vacation. For this particular trip, we agreed to see Paris in a new way. As the English novelist, Lawrence Durrell said, one must “travel with the eyes of the spirit wide open, sit quietly and observe and smell and listen for the spirit of the place which is the most important determinant in culture…one should tune in, idly, but with real inward attention”. Therefore, in the style of Hemingway’s vignettes (1922 Paris), we have shared our reflections and “quiet, inward” observations of this enigmatic city.
Shakespeare and Company
I have seen a gathering place
Where English is the common language;
A haven for pedantic readers and aspiring writers
Encased among literary classics, hard bound, yellowed,
Marked by fingerprints and coffee stains of the great writers of the past
And patrons, passing through.
The melodic chords of the piano, bringing strangers together
The quiet library, interrupted only by the bells of the Notre Dame
Outside the window
Watching the world pass by.