An Empress Spending Her Later Years in Paris

This exquisite portrait of a woman's regal profile, " Une femme inachevée " by Marie-France, invokes several questions. What is she thinking? What is she glancing at? Who is she and what does she remember? /In my mind, she becomes the embodiment of the former empress of Iran, Farah and wife of the late Shah. She is in exile and spending her later years in Paris. As she looks from her balcony, she sees morning melting into another Spring day. Blossoms overcrowd the branches and a flock of birds form a bridge of wings in flight, a symbolic link between past and present, one corner of thought with another.

Restless, the empress untwists her hair from a bun untangling strands along with memories of her last days in Iran. She recalls the minarets standing like white birds with longl necks and an eerie stillness on the edge of the sea, the red pomegranates in bloom but enflaming the trees like swollen wounds. She feels once again that same essence of unease, the need to be vigilant and take charge of her life. Though safe and comfortable in Paris, she now thinks of the Arab Spring, the uprisings in The Middle East and how many people will suffer during the revolt and the illusions propelled by their radical regime. And still, in a bittersweet way, she clings to the past, the culture and history of a beautiful garden, a nation called Persia. .

© 2012, Wendy Howe. E-mail.