of several paintings that hang on my living room wall, two are in the orientalist style. odalisques. one is a garden scene where three hanims are reclining on a carpet by the mist of a fountain. the other is a harem scene where two hanims are reclining on a sofa in their beautifully ornamented gowns, whispering to one another. 

i always wonder to myself what they're talking about... what gossip they're exchanging... what confidences they're compromising.

i like to imagine they're talking about love.
but not just any love.
a love that persists in the flesh.
even after the love in the heart has faded away.