l'éclat de nuit et le brigand

«Puzzle», 2007

Four years ago it was in December, I clearly remember, the baron’s train arrival at the Gare Matabiau. With a spirit akin to Mahler’s or Poe’s, he stole his way into the heart of the Ville Rose. An ivory cane to fend off the gloom he retained, and to repose his young and restless mind; but a sparkle there glinted, or at least there hinted, in the shadows of his grey-green eye. And he strolled at leisure under festivity’s pleasures, without once ever heaving a sigh. But twilight then fell, and under its spell, notes of jazz and java combined. He fashioned a sonnet and toasted upon it, with cinnamon-and-nutmeg-spiced wine. In the glow of December’s Christmas splendor, I tasted my first mulled wine…

And now, as the night was senescent
And star-dials pointed to morn —
As the star-dials hinted of morn —
At the end of our path a liquescent
And nebulous lustre was born,*

And in the crystalline light, I did not tarry to uncover, that among the bright-eyed baron’s arts, he was fond most of robbing young girls’ hearts.

* Excerpt from Ulalume by Edgar Allan Poe

a recipe for glühwein aka vin chaud aka mulled wine

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