As the night dawns over the streets, flooding the corridors and winding cobblestone paths, and the homes of petite women and their children go dark, a sad song hums in the ears of the restless -- those subject to the siren of the stars. A scholar scribbles the ink of his new ideas into a crowded notebook, desperate to explain their lengths. A widow, with raven hair and coal eyes, weeps for her beloved, long gone in the wisps of life and its unpredictable losses. A stargazer, small for the crowd, moves a bulky telescope through his parent’s flat, struggling to avoid waking the neighbors and the rest of the unit. A saxophonist, after playing without end, for some change or some attention, now sits on his case, dozing off against a brick wall. But there is a woman, shy of 20, with long limbs and watery eyes, that strikes the streets with her small shoes in the absence of sunlight. She passes the boulangerie with its fading scent of pastries and breads sold at high demand in the mornings, and slows against a wall, breathless and drained of tears. The “Le Navigator” sign is glowing above a glass window, in which she spots her reflection. Her scarlett pout is low, like the trees in the park by Tour Eiffel, and her eyes glossy with the tears of feeling lost in the midst of life. She wipes the black running from her large lids, catching her breath and holding her chest, and moves now towards the window, a portal into her own. She slowly traces the outline of her nose in the glass, moving to her pronounced jaw, followed by her brow and mouth, and ponders everything frustrating about the City of Lights at 3 am. Loneliness creeps into her heart -- a blanket made with the softest and yet harshest of seams. The twilight now looms over her lost soul, along with the rest of the restless, and those with the gift of sleep, and those falling in and out of consciousness -- a gateway into the truth of the solitary mind. In the wee hours, when no one is watching and there is no obligation to be awake and active, the people alive, like our crying mademoiselle, are defined by the craving of the acts that can’t wait for morning. Men and women are making love, studying, crying, staring, running away, singing, and smiling. They make up a population of the sane, yet for centuries, those awake for the moon were declared lunatics, people of lowest ethos. The whirlwind of ideas and pure authenticity thrives like it can not during the day in the City of Lights.
Our mademoiselle now strolls past the streetlights hanging onto the last of their yellow bulbs and breathes in the scent of her fellow lunatics, finding comfort in the now-clear boulevard, much like the clear mind she desired. Her face is pale, drained, and waterless, but her heart is pumping with the rhythm of her heels. She is lonely, but the darkness wraps her arms around her and begins to guide her back home, away from the glass window of the boulangerie, and towards her wee flat, in the City of Lone, where she will find subtle peace in reflecting till the sun rises.