I was fifteen years old. She was blonde like the wheats. I was romantic like we are no longer. My eyes stroked her long silky hair dancing in the hollow of her loins. And it suited me well. So begins my very first love story, maddening my mind and senses for four sweet years.
Her name is Florence. From our first meeting, I become the captain of her heart. Paris in spring, capital city of lovers. L’île aux CygnesSwan Island means a walk in the moonlight, hand in hand. But I did not dare to touch her. The touching of the eyes was already intense burn. Delicious, full of unknown promises, full of pleasures to come, full of eternal oaths – and painful too. Causing uncertainty that creates doubt by magnifying the loved one.
Our hands sometimes brush together according to our pace. Desire, modesty. The smell of her hair moves me more than anything. I almost faint, but I display the jaded air that seems to me all right. What an idiot boy! Florence is more natural. More spontaneous. But no more than me, she dares to cross the barrier of the first physical contact: take my hand. It will take two long months before this so desired paradise. Your hand in mine, my love. These words that we think, that occupy our thoughts constantly, and that we would not say under torture.
Never admit that you love her, sings Guy Mardel in Eurovision 1965. His stupid words are in everyone’s mind. We do not understand that Guy is tired of her. We think that to be quiet is what to do. Hide your love, dress it in gray, slip it under the carpet. What I excel. Yet our hands are finally touching each other. Champ de Mars, Muette gardens, Trocadero,see above pix Bagatelle rose garden, hand-in-hand are our demure walks. We see each other every day. Flo lives close to my home on the next street. We stay chatting for hours on her doorstep. Neighbors see us two, very young, very in love, and that makes them talk.
Florence’s father is a distinguished little man. Oddly, he plays the musical saw and it fascinates me. One evening, he comes home from work earlier. He surprises us in front of the building. He sees our tangled fingers, embarrassment flushes our cheeks. He doesn’t say a word, but the next day, no more farewell to the gate. Flo doesn’t want any more. Now we’ll have to be more discreet. The ransom of gossip. Sad 60s – out of date, so stilted, so shocking to me!
For Flornoy, the Arcane VI THE LOVER describes a decisive step on the inner path. After the incarnation and its range of possibilities represented by the arcane I THE MAGICIAN, after learning life with Granny THE HIGH PRIESTESS, Mother EMPRESS, Father EMPEROR and Grandfather HIEROPHANT, comes the individuation induced by THE LOVER. It is the first arcane where the child becomes an autonomous being, who recognizes himself as such, makes his decisions alone, and already glimpses his future life, which unfolds in his imagination like a long calm river.
In Flornoy’s vision, it is not the discovery of love that makes individuation, but the suffering it induces. For him, the Arcane VI THE LOVER is a terrible test, a wrench. The first love must end badly. A cruel rupture opens the heart of the lover. From now on he/she is able to love.
It is true that those who have not known a heartache do not have an open heart. They wander their life like a lost soul, a closed pout pulls the corner of the lips down, their frowning brow bring out the lion’s wrinkle. Neither happy nor unhappy, they do not know what life means and die without any heart regretting them. These often become attached to money, they woo power and the powerful, passing through life as a self-service store. Everything is material for them. They judge vulgar, dangerous and totally unproductive emotions. Let us pity them, they carry their hell inside.
In love with the beautiful Flo, I carry my paradise in me. Drunk with love and the inner glory that it kindles in my heart, I ride the streets of my neighborhood. Passy, my village. I know every nook. I meet a friend every corner. Each of them can read the joy that pulsates in me. In the 60s, Passy enjoyed a very cheerful neighborhood life. I was a boy-scout in the 230th Paris troop, all my friends lived in the perimeter. And the friends of my friends were mine too. There were no rival gangs, this bullshit was not invented yet.
On the other hand, there was a permanent social mixing. Sons and daughters of CAC-40 bosses rubbed shoulders with artisans, concierges and small traders. The rue de Passy then only had food shops. The shoe and clothes fancy boutiques that we find today did not colonize this lively artery, filled with the screams of vendors behind their stalls of fruits and vegetables, poultry, cold meats, cheeses … To crown this beautiful atmosphere, three cinemas at a modest price awaited us every Thursday. The weekend was reserved for scouting. We went camping in the woods.
La belle vie, my friends, I tell you. Besides, I was in love. Yes, but I was a westerner. While the Asian is content with little, the Westerner wants more, says André Malraux. After a while – four years anyway! – the hands that give and the kisses cheeks seemed to me very insufficient. I wanted more. The Britons and their Celtic brothers are the most Western of Europe. So the most excessive! Then came this beautiful summer gently sloping, where I knew other hugs in the honey arms of a charming Vietnamese girl. So happy I was, so sure of myself, so ignorant of the feelings of others, I told it all to my Florence … who left me right away.
The beautiful one cried all the tears of her body. Her heart was open: she consoled herself in the soft arms of my best friend. So goes the life of a sweetheart when revenge responds to inconstancy. As for me, I already had another lover. So true is it that before the first sorrow of love, one’s heart is very hard. We are just in love with love, not with each other. This state of affairs lasted a long time …
Forty years after, a rupture tore my heart apart, making me fit to love at the long last. Until then, it was me who trampled the hearts around. When finally mine opened, I paid the slate of fifty-nine years of cynicism. The dog I was changed into a cuddly cat. He got his claws back. He purrs and mutates negativity. Finally I love it, this old mating matou.