I imagine these scrapings to be the kind of blue that appears in the photograph alongside. But I don’t actually believe that’s what’s described in this passage. Every time I read it, I imagine a different shade. And mostly it’s not a shade that I would call blue. Not a blue like the one in this photograph. But I like the idea of it being this kind of blue, the blue here. And I imagine that Grippes likes the idea of a man like Poche leading a life like this.
But that quote is from the previous story, from a time period earlier than readers witness here, in “The Colonel’s Child”. And, by now, we know more about how Juliette came to marry Edouard. We know more about that shared past.
Which is the other reason why I selected this photograph, not only for its insistent sort of blue, but because it is a view of a view, like a writer’s view of a writer.
And here we have this observation in the current musing: “You have to remember the period, and France occupied, to imagine how one could think and behave. We always say this ‘This of the times we had to live in’ – when the past is dragged forward, all the life gone out of it, and left unbreathing at our feet.”
If you were to imagine stories about France occupied, and how people thought and behaved, I don’t think one would be inclined to imagine stories like “A Recollection”, or that one would imagine stories like “Rue de Lille” and “The Colonel’s Child”, the stories which follow it.
But one can imagine unhappily married poets and women married too young to accurately predict where they might find a certain kind of happiness.
That’s all too easy to imagine.
Overhead in a Balloon‘s stories: Speck’s Idea / Overhead in a Balloon / Luc and His Father / A Painful Affair / Larry / A Flying Start / Grippes and Poche / A Recollection / Rue de Lille / The Colonel’s Child / Lena / The Assembly