Memories on the scaffold

With my regards to my fellow writers, I leave my inspiration by

Indicador # 22 del pozo de tinta


Memories on the scaffold

I am certain that the letter I have just written to my sister-in-law will not reach its destination. It has served as a farewell to a loved person who loved me, one, different from the many millions who hated me without ever having met me. In this letter, a few hours before my execution, I express my dismay at this definitive separation from my children and I express my hope of meeting Luis in the next world.

Now, before the cart arrives to take me to the scaffold, I must make my summary, which I will present to God.

I was just a child among many of my parents' children, a being unaware of the weight of tradition until they took me out of my childhood to make me the instrument of an alliance. I was just a child, not taught the letters of her own language, not taught manners, I ran free and happyin the vast palace gardens.

My mother has sought me out and told me that I must speak French, know the manners of the royal courts, that I must give a proper opinion on music and theatre.

I left my childhood to be buried by wigs, corsets under regal fabrics, unthinkable shoes. I learned to wear, with indifference, the greatest treasures, precious metals set with pearls, diamonds, sapphires, rubies, emeralds.

That would be my princess world. I would marry a boy like me, who might one day become king and I his queen.

I saw him for the first time in front of the altar, dressed in his light blue suit adorned with silver. I felt sorry for him, for his ugly face, despite the shaving, for his tormented gaze that wandered over me with evident shame. He was my own age and yet he looked more like a little boy than a teenager.

From the long and sumptuous ceremony we emerged as husband and wife, I could see that later. At the moment I only had eyes to see the immense splendour of the fireworks. The sky lit up with magnificent colours and shapes. At that moment I felt that I had the sky at my fingertips. The sound of the explosions awakened my womanly soul and I was joyful.

There was feasting for days, delicacies, music, fireworks, to celebrate this marriage that united two kingdoms. Beside me, Luis remained silent, following the instructions of what he was supposed to do.

Neither then, nor in the following years, did we talk about love, nor about us.

In front of the audience he held out his gloved hand and on the back of his I placed mine. For seven long years that was the only direct contact we had and the representation, before my eyes, of the special love that grew between us.

When we finally had a son, Luis was so happy that he wanted to reproduce the magnitude of our wedding feast. And we looked again at the skies full of colours and manufactured stars and Paris was filled with the smell of gunpowder.

And this wonderful party happened three times with each new child. So when I think of them I imagine the sky in successive explosions of colour.

Fireworks in the sky is my favourite image of earth. I will carry it with me.

To our misfortune, we were the kings of a decaying system, with a court skilled in intrigue against me and a people, who hated me, infected with an eternal evil.

Today I have been sentenced to death. I will walk to the scaffold with my brow high, dressed in a white garment and without a crown. Luis has preceded me and awaits me.

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