The 20th of June 1944 – Firenze, Toscana

Luca, bella,

Quoi? Que? What?

How did I get here all of a sudden, surrounded by old things, familiar things, all kinds of monuments that glow dull in the fading sunlight, fading in the sunset as the sky turns pink and purple, blossoming like the bruises on the petals of a rose, dead?

Do you know? Do I? Can anyone?

All of a sudden, I’m here on a path, walking on a path that I’ve walked on before, that she’s walked on before, that we’ve walked on before. Walking on a path that’s been laid far before I’ve even come here. Yet it’s entirely unique to me. I know because all that I see when I walk is exactly what I’ve already seen. The children. The laughter. The sunset that makes the sky blossom with the purples and pinks of a dead, dying rose petal.

All of a sudden, I’m here, flipping through memory, trying to keep my balance while standing still while the memories flicker past.

The smell of sweat and a sweet embrace. The taste of sweat. Sweat and a yellow shirt, zipper on the front, sweat – sweet sweat. Copper-tasting on the tongue while gazing into sky-blue eyes – the color of the sky at noon and long before the light fades and causes the colors to change to the hues reminiscent of the bruised petals of a red rose, dead and dying rose, dead.

Copper-tasting, blood on my tongue. Bitten through while staring at the brushstrokes of the masters. Strokes I’ve made before, strokes I’ve walked and rowed – perhaps rowed along the river – yes! The river, here and winding through the whole of it until arriving at an all-to-unsatisfactory conclusion.

Why? Por que? Pourquoi?

Gianluigi –


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