There are two prompts for the Līgo Haibun Challenge this week – illusion or ecstasy. After writing around the moments of ecstasy the other day, illusion still stayed on my mind…to keep wandering there. Until now…
The very first time I set foot in that city, I felt at home. Like a traveller who had been around the world and finally had returned to the place recognized by her heart immediately. There was nothing of the fleeting touristy pathos about the cradle of the Renaissance. Nor need to see all the “obligatory” objects to tick the check-boxes in some non-existing bucket list. I didn’t need to fall in love with it because you don’t fall in love with home. It simply is a part of you. And I knew by the sixth and all the other senses I was right where I was supposed to be. The feeling of different depth, something that reached beyond my comprehension, yet was not lost in translation for my soul. I found myself standing at Piazza del Duomo with my fingertips exploring the marble of the Baptistery…so familiar, like they had brushed over it before often, in silent admiration. Awareness about where one or another street labyrinth would take me like I had walked there hundreds of times. It was not so much Ponte Vecchio with all the opulent golden bling in the window cases that brought back almost real memories. More like a distant spot down at the Arno river, nearby the stone arches of another bridge – Ponte Santa Trinita…a reminder of the times I use to watch almost tangible fog slowly disappearing during the morning hours. Or in winter, as the first snow had covered the red rooftops, I had kneeled at the edge of the water, perplexed when the stream in its dark anger wouldn’t nurture the white peacefulness. Yes, the constant fusion in the air, the one I would call “the graceful beauty”, created by art and culture, frequently obstructed by political rises and falls. And those filigree fleur-de-lys all around the city, trying to smooth the sharp edges of Medici stories by purity of lillies. I don’ t know which was my time there but for sure it goes back much further than Benigni and Gucci. To Galilei or maybe Boticelli. Or probably all the way to Boccacio when he was in need for a muse to create “The Decameron“. Who knows… Sipping a glass of dark, rich vintage, looking at the sun generously caressing the ripe olives in the hills of Tuscany, I know there is something more in me than simple fondness for Florence. Imprinted to be decoded some day. In vino veritas. Profound memories or just a veil of illusion?
in old labyrinths
i search for my yesterdays
The Līgo Haibun Challenge