5. The Seine at Night
During a global pandemic, I fell in love with a river.
One of the most beautiful things in the world to me is the stretch of river between the Pont Neuf and the Pont Royal, at nightfall. The light on the Seine between these bridges slides liquid over the surface. Sometimes it is like shattered gold, and sometimes like colored silks or a school of flashing fish, and sometimes like quicksilver. It reflects the blue or gray of the evening sky, and the lamps that have just come on, and the floodlights of the monuments that line the banks on both sides. Stop lights and the lights from boats throw shivers of pinkish red and mermaid green over the broken surface. As boats move past, a current of water will well up from the bottom to form a fleeting smooth mirror the color of the atmosphere. The blue, the gray, the bright spots on the water, the reddish blur of leafless trees in winter, or green in summer, and the blue of the sky, the gold of the sky, the pink of the sky and of the light on the buildings, the stone facades that turn violet in the golden streetlights of a winter dusk.
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