On Friday, I found her, at the Art Walk. I was filming a magical singer in Ken Keasy Square when I got a glimpse of her thru my lens. I come in for a close-up, and I gasp! Here she is, my model for Fair Rosamond that I have been searching for ever since I declared I was a Pre-Raphaelite in 1969. As an original hippie, I had always had long hair, but, now I was not holding back. I now carried a palette, my shield, and a brush, like a Knight’s Sword.
My hero, Dante Gabriel Rossetti had his Muse, Siddell, pose for his version of Fair Rosamond, but this image lacks refinement and good breeding. My Rosamond had to have a regal profile, a strong chin, and an angelic mouth. She would be more handson, than pretty. I did not want a poser, but a powerful personality that took risks. She had to be as radical as her paramour, King Henry FitzEmpress, the son of Geoffrey de Anjou. From Henry and Queen Eleanore were born the Plantagenets who would lauch the War of the Roses.
She must have felt my energy directed at her, for even though I used two singers as my human shield, a beautful women can feel the eyes of an admirer. She raises her lovely hand and waves me off. But I persist. And, now she makes her way to me. She has to know what I am up to. I pretend I do not see her coming my way. This is a musical, an ancient dance.
Please view the first two videos. Be patient before you behold her. At the corner of Floral Drive and Fairmount I have an epiphany. I knew I was weeks away from beholding her. She had to appear.
All of a sudden we are exchanging words, names, and ideas. I tell her about the family legend, and our friendship with Joaquin Miller who co-founded the Bohemian Club. She stops my narrative.
“The Bohemian Club? There is a Bohemian Club?”
I am aghast! No man has ever had such great fortune. I was convinced I would die before I met a woman who knew what a Bohemian was. Not only did she know the meaning, she wanted me to take her to this club – NOW!
I told this beautiful young woman Joaquin gathered artists, poets and writers at ‘The Abbey’ a salon in the Oakland Hills he also called the Hights.
“We should found a Bohemian Club here in Eugene!” I suggested and her eyes were twinkling with mischievousness. This is a young woman who loves thinking outside the box. Here is – Belle Companion!
“I am a radical!” She informs me. And I clutch my heart.
“Me too! Has anyone ever painted you? I would like to paint your portrait.”
“Someone did a drawing of me, but, I always wanted my portrait done.”
This conversation occurred after I turned my camera off because I did not want it to come between us. Her reaction to me telling her what my blog is about, is the end of my novel ‘Capturing Beauty’, for she captures me, takes my name and my number.
“We can talk!”
We speak the same timeless language.
I have already done one sketch of her looking down at her cellphone, her beauty fingers taking my name and capturing it. This is Fair Rosamond. At her spinning wheel, making flax threads for her embroidery. Here is the end of the clue of the Rouge Thread. Here is the splicing of the Rosy Quest to the thread that carry on the dream into the future.
My work is done. The Master has found his Apprentice – already doing the good work, and looking for a good and gallant deed to do! She knows who I am. She has been looking for me for a long time.
From Belmont, to Fairmount, my kindred have come to plant the kiss. Belle, my Beautiful Belle, is awake! And my heart, my mind, and my Bohemians Soul… soars! I am in love with my Muse. I always have been.
In the last video she is surrounded by beautiful old crones under the S of the Pepsi sign. How many, I dare not count lest I be whisked away the Land of the Living Grimm’s Fairytales. Then, the crone who has been concealing her, moves aside, and a curtain that has been closed, opens. I am on pins and needles to see her eyes. When I do, the sleeping kingdom is awoken. From a across the courtyard I give her a little kiss.
The painting above is titled ‘Lady Lilith’ by Dante Gabriel Rossetti. A Lily, and a Rose.
President: Royal Rosamond Press
Rosemonde Clifford, dite la Belle Rosemonde (en anglais, Rosamund Clifford) (prob. avant 1140 – 1175/1176), fut la maîtresse préférée du roi Henri II d’Angleterre.
Fair Rosamonde: la belle Rosamonde
La belle Rosamonde, fair Rosamonde
Translated from the German by Lucy Crane and done into pictures by Walter Crane. Household Stories: From the Collection of the Brothers Grimm. New York: R. Worthington, 1883.
“At last he came to the tower and opened the door of the little room where Rosamond lay.”
Saint Stephen with a rose
In and out of the garden he goes
Country garland in the wind and the rain (note 1)
Wherever he goes the people all complain
Stephen prosper in his time
Well he may, and he may decline
Did it matter, does it now?
Stephen would answer if he only knew how
Wishing well with a golden bell
Bucket hanging clear to hell
Hell half way twixt now and then
Stephen fill it up and lower down, and lower down again
Lady finger, dipped in moonlight
Writing “What for?” across the morning sky
Sunlight splatters dawn with answers
Darkness shrugs and bids the day goodbye
Speeding arrow, sharp and narrow
What a lot of fleeting matters you have spurned
Several seasons with their treasons
Wrap the babe in scarlet colours, call it your own
Did he doubt or did he try?
Answers a-plenty in the by and by
Talk about your plenty, talk about your ills
One man gathers what another man spills (note 2)
Saint Stephen will remain
All he’s lost he shall regain
Seashore washed by the suds and the foam
Been here so long he’s got to calling it home
Fortune comes a-crawling, Calliope woman
Spinning that curious sense of your own
Can you answer? Yes I can
But what would be the answer to the answer man?
A Little While
Dante Gabriel Rossetti
A little while a little love
The hour yet bears for thee and me
Who have not drawn the veil to see
If still our heaven be lit above.
Thou merely, at the day’s last sigh,
Hast felt thy soul prolong the tone;
And I have heard the night-wind cry
And deemed its speech mine own.
A little while a little love
The scattering autumn hoards for us
Whose bower is not yet ruinous
Nor quite unleaved our songless grove.
Only across the shaken boughs
We hear the flood-tides seek the sea,
And deep in both our hearts they rouse
One wail for thee and me.
A little while a little love
May yet be ours who have not said
The word it makes our eyes afraid
To know that each is thinking of.
Not yet the end: be our lips dumb
In smiles a little season yet:
I’ll tell thee, when the end is come,
How we may best forget.
by my Grandfather
The tide was low today, my love
A cadence of the sea was wrought
In melancholy strain, and low and fraught
With whisperings of your name above
The deep sea song!
A shell that lured along the shore
Whispered; “I love you evermore!”
I wrote your name upon the sands –
Would that I traced with gentle hands –
The minor chords were wont to spell
The tide is high tonight, my dear.
The rock-bound shore loves the wave
But sends it dying to its grave.
The low base notes vie with the fear
The wind send on
The all-encircling gloom
Descended o’er old ocean’s tomb!
Your name is gone tonight, my love:
The angry surge rushed in above.
It cries aloud, with sea gull’s shrill
“I love you still!”