paris ww2

The stillborn moon, born of mother earth, sired by the sun, a blemished perfection, a gyrating mausoleum, its foundations, a lethargic magnetism.

An old man winds back time, her image from long ago at his shoulder, reflects upon her charcoal lips, the echo of their days of carefree forbidden delights, all the time hearing the noxious resonance of a requiem, a towheaded choir of fallen angels in the chancel of his sceptic mind.

The very thought of her sets his heart on fire still, yet he pays the highest price, for long since she is nought but a less than precise scorched memory of the times before the Swastika’s greedy march, of the days before the Fall of Paris and of the instant they took her away.

He bows his head, smiles the comforting hidden smile of world weary tender remembrance. As with the stillborn moon, she is also a blemished perfection. As with the stillborn moon, she endures.

Of blithesome preference, he shuts his eyes one last time.

‘J’attendrai’ (I Will Wait) sung by Rina Ketty (1938). A piece of music popular during the days of the occupation of Paris.


(the thought provoking photograph above was taken in Paris during the occupation and was kindly forwarded to me by a most accomplished young lady writer to whom I offer my sincere thanks)

55 thoughts on “THE STILLBORN MOON

  1. You have once again mined that seam of a vanished era and struck golden perfection. Everything in every way is brilliant. And boy, what a photograph AND what a song. I am a sucker fro music from that era.

    1. Cheers, Ms S. That is some photograph. I feel there is one massive story to write from just the picture. As to the music, I love the French language, it has a certain something no other language has.

      1. Yep re that picture. It is amazing. One of these iconic images in terms of all it shows really and yet not really known. These songs are something else. I could listen to them all day and you are right re the French language that way. YOu did a great job here Mike , you r writing is the icing on the cake. x

      2. Cheers, Ms S. It arrived, the photo that is, within a large collection of WW2 in Paris photos issued by the Nazi’s trying to prove all was alive and well in the city published by that little facist rag, The Daily Mail. I believe that shot is the only decent thing to ever come out of that ‘newspaper’.

      1. I’ve been avoiding FB lately. Too much for me right now. I’ll try to catch up with you properly there when I’m brave enough to return! Great that you’re good though. You run a fine team you must be so proud of, young Marissa

  2. Mike, what you’ve captured here has given me the chills and brought tears to my eyes. With your emotionally charged writing and amazing imagery you’ve turned the ugly truth for so many into something beautiful, bittersweet and most of all magical. “J’attendrai”, is so very sad, everyone waited. Thank you. ~ Mia

    1. My thanks, Mia. It is rare that a photograph depicting a truth from recent history is so emotionally overwhelming that it prompts a small fiction upon the same theme. In all of my 114 years I have not come across the like of it. I am addicted to it, and long may that last. I can but thank again the one who discovered it.

      1. You’re most welcome. This post is a lovely presentation and with it you’ve created a beautiful remembrance, much more than a small fiction. In fact I shared it with my mother, she was deeply moved and said that your writing captured a time in history that should never be forgotten.

      1. Cheers, JoAnn. I’ve not yet made my mind up with this one as it’s a fiction, whereas I self-published my previous two poetry books only because the market for poetry isn’t that huge and I was just pleased to have written them. I need to take proper advice with a book as to the best way of selling and distributing.

      2. Being picked up by a publishing house would be nice. Writers are also making headway with self-publication (in the US, Amazon is big.) The best of luck with that decision!

      3. Being the world’s laziest man I tend to think self-publishing is the easiest route, plus I get to design my own cover art. Your advice has helped consolidate my view, sincere thanks.

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