Text/ Portrait of a woman


Set in the higher region of a pale, elongated face, her blue eyes devour the surrounding world with a surprising mobility. Her carefully plumped lips, an eccentric pink, come to life and uncover the immaculate teeth of a woman still spared from aging.

A peculiar thing, when she talks, her nostrils palpitate just enough to alter the architecture of her nose. Her delicate silhouette is capped with a free flowing, reddish mane.

Her entire being exudes impatience. As if the world refused her the place it owed her. No resentment in her look, however, no trace of bitterness. The impetuousness, muted and volcanic, of unappeased hopes consumes her entirely, to the point of stiffening her slender body.

Her spontaneity is stupefying. The art of deceit, so well mastered by Parisian women, is just as foreign to her as their over-refined clothing.

While she reveals herself without reservation, under the soft restaurant light, a nervous choreography propels her large hands.

I look at her intensely.

It seems to me that as soon as she overcomes the disorder that troubles her, when life has polished the rough rock of her temperament, she will have courage of a patient matron. Women who give, at the risk of forgetting themselves a little, the best of what they have to the next generation. 

Text published in my book Spirit (2008)
Translated from French by Nicolas Allinder