Thirteen Moments

Rue de la Huchette

Some of my memories and impressions of Paris.


Every day and every night the Seine winds through the city of Paris. 

It flows through  times ancient and modern, through the rain and the sun, the snow and the moon.

It passes by the bridges and quays, by war and peace, the rich and the poor.

It transports not only the boats and barges, but also the dreams, of the people of Paris.

The Seine is truly the mother of the city of Paris.


On a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, on the quays of this maternal river,

men and women stroll

where the Pont Neuf stands

with an old and quiet grandeur:

a passage between the right and the left bank

for almost four centuries.


In the middle of the Seine, on the Ile de la Cite,

one finds a great lady, very beautiful and very austere.  

Notre-dame of Paris.  

With her large towers, fierce gargoyles,

and majestic windows,

this lady is a very impressive sight, and a little frightening.


Near Notre-Dame, across pont St. Michel,

is a street that is very narrow and old.  

There is a lot of noise, a lot of bright light in this street at

night; but early in the

morning of a rainy day, there is a calm in the Rue de la Huchette,

and a soft light falls on the damp cobblestones.


Who are these beings who rise

from the Fountain of Rivers in the Place de la Concorde?

Where is the water that gives them life?

When will the sun return to their faces? 

The beings watch and wait.


In the shadow of the basilica of Sacre-Couer wander the streets of Montmartre.  

Beautiful and quiet, some streets have the air of a lost time.


Take a walk along these cobble-stoned streets

and you will be surprised

to discover, perhaps, a man walking

through a wall of stone.  

With one leg in the stone and one leg already free, he salutes you.


In the garden of the Tuileries,

under a sky full of clouds,

lives a goddess.  

She is graceful, sensual and nude.

With her arrows at her waist, the huntress

Diana and her hound look at each other. 

A seagull is her crown.


In Les Halles, in front of St. Eustache Cathedral,

rests a large head of stone.

An equally large hand beside it,

the head looks into the sky.  

No neck, no arms.

No shoulders, no legs. 

 A head and a hand. 


A man's or a woman's?  

I don't know. 

I look at the head.  

The head looks at the sky.


The deafening streets around the Arch whirl.

Arch of Triumph.

Arch of Napoleon.

Arch of War.  

Arch of Death.

Arch of Tears.

Arch of Widows.

Arch of Madness.



Tea room.


Every day, every one looks for fine food.



Street market.

Rain or shine.

Every day, everyone looks for fine food.


Good morning, brother.

I have a strong hunger.

I would like to eat bones, and drink blood.

Do you have a snack for me?


One very cold night in November,

I stood in the courtyard

of the Louvre, the first night

of my first trip to Paris, and I cried.

I cried like a baby.


 I wasn't sad.

I said to myself, "I am finally here, I am finally 

home, I am finally free."

Where did these thoughts  come from?

I don't know, but it was a very deep, very true experience, and I will never forget it.

Thank you, Paris.  Thank you very much.