Monday, May 31, 2010

A Pencil Sketch in France

This is the first original pencil drawing I ever saw
Drawn by a french street artist
of my newlywed parents while stationed in France
Dated 1945
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( The fee ?~ a pack of cigarettes )
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Until today it hadn't even crossed my mind
that this could have been the beginning of my love for art.
To see that someone could take a mere pencil
and create a beautiful likeness on paper.

Another by the same artist
~ I am in the process of digitally repairing the damage ~
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My mother was an R.N. who joined the army
and served in Europe during WWII.
Sent overseas just days after marrying my father,
who also joined the army. He worked on the railroads.
They sometimes would discover where
each other was stationed ~ and meet, as they did this day.
~ Newlyweds in France ~
not as romantic as it sounds.
They saw the ravages of the war.
My mother worked in a tent evacuation hospital
on the front lines, putting soldiers bodies back together.
Hearing constant sounds of bombing,
giving of herself to save lives.
She was awarded the Bronze Star Medal.
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I wonder sometimes what became of the young men
whose lives she saved... whose children and grandchildren
and their ongoing families ~ lived ~
because she selflessly gave of her abilities.
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And whatever became of this artist?
Signed and dated 1945 Verdun
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Until today I hadn't even studied his name
Or googled "Verdun"
So much I do not know! And never really wondered about.
Ten years after this I entered their world.
Now that I am older, I have so many questions
and they are not alive to ask.
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This memorial day, I remember
the sacrifices my parents, and thousands upon thousands
of others made in the name of Freedom.
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Their lives were not lost in the war, not literally.
But they were never the same after the things they lived through.
~ Today I honor them ~
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And this artist? How thankful I am that he created these drawings!
I would love to find out more about him,
if he survived the war
if he had children and grandchildren
~ if any became artists? ~
(can any of you decipher his name for me?)

7 comments:

Lorrie said...

What a beautiful treasure you have in those sketches. History, love, war, sacrifice, so many stories to be told.

lesthook said...

What wonderful drawings! You are so lucky to have them!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Violet dear,

This is an amazing story, and the artifact to go with it is stunning. I am taken back with your recounting of what your parents did, how they lived their young lives serving. The drawings are outstanding, and your questions are wonderful springboards from which a fictional tale could be told. What if you were to write, illustrate and create a short story book in memory of your parents AND this unknown artist? How cool would that be?

Thank you for coming by today; I have been out all day and I am so glad to hear that you finally tried the chocolate yogurt mix! TRY IT WITH FROZEN CHERRIES and a drop of almond extract and then with all the same other ingredients. Ruben says that is his favorite.

Oh and guess what I found today? I was at a small strip mall waiting for Archivers to open up to get some more embellishments for my vintage book; they weren't open yet so I went into the consignment shop next door. They have wonderful furniture and cloths and I SAW A MARBLE fireplace. I went to look at the price and it was $189.00 including the marble base, brass endirons and an electrice log!!! HHEHEEEEE! I called Ruben, he said, "Come and get me", and NOW IT IS IN MY POSSESSION! IT IS REAL WHITE MARBLE! INto my studio it goes!!! YEYEYEYEY!

Jennifer in France said...

The signature looks like a name most likely Belgian,not French.I have a relative buried in one of the many American military cemetaries in that region. There wer many memorials services last weekend in their honor. I now live in another region of France and am trying to write about such stories.

Marilyn said...

What a wonderful treasure you have.

Creative Carmelina said...

Oh you should definitly do something with copies of these photos and the poetry you mentioned....make a collage or something...i think that would be wonderful fun for you!

and btw! i enjoyed the pretty puppy in your last post! she's very posh! lol

thanks for your visit...come again!

ciao bella
creative carmelina

Say It In Color said...

Violet, I am finally visiting some of my favorite blogs and today several of your posts have blessed me beyond measure .... I needed the second Corinthians quote...Let light shine out of darkness....then this fabulous entry of the drawings of your parents....I have been watching D-Day on the Military channel with my husband and with seeing these drawings brought it more home....what treasures and I too feel honored to get to share in their story. We just bought copies of the Gettysburg Address and the Constitution...lovely little books for our young men in the family for Father's Day...including the the new citizen that is from originally from Mexico. They are Christians as well and love this country and the freedom that was fought for!