It’s a conversation, a song if you would,
between the profane and the perverted.
A skeleton burgeoning with flora, overwrought
with the thought that this may be the last bloom.
My body heaves as the regurgitated ghosts of days past
exit through my ribs, it burns, I’m cracked in two
flowing seeping exploding I am nothing. No more
than an example, no less than a monument.
My ghosts are my father’s , my brother’s, my saviors
Julie Andrews photographed by Cecil Beaton
‘Told Again’ - Traditional Tales told by Walter de la Mare; with illustrations by A. H. Watson. Published 1927 by Basil Blackwell, Oxford.
Le Charmeur d’oiseaux, Paris 1910
Cecil Beaton, Charles James Gowns, 1948
You can see the history in the gowns, you can sense it pushing up beneath the petticoats.
Marie Louise, what can be said about her? She was a magically touched little girl whom most adored. She had very odd tendencies for a child of only eight, like forgetting what day it was as if she lived against the sundial, talking and at times dancing with herself because to this petite princess the best friend to have was one’s self. To her, the other children and their concerns where banal, learning how to tie her paten leather shoes, methodically counting the abacus, and reading just took up too much time from stealing a sweet morsel from the kitchen, sneaking into her mother’s boudoir and running her fingers through every yard of fabric, and laying in the courtyard watching the day waste away, she learned to luxuriate in her senses while everyone else toiled unnecessarily. She felt it useless to worry and far more important to take joy in the beauty of her surrounding world, as hermetic as it may be. She was a magician and an aesthete before she could understand her own life. Butterflies seemed to always find her and flutter about, almost like an aura of sorts, and she would chat at length with animals; mimicking the conversations her father would have about the peasants in the countryside, battles over land, and the importance of titles. She felt it was all rather silly. Adults marveled at her love of animals and called her the St. Francis of Savoy. Others thought she was a witch.