Illustration for Jacques Prévert’s amazing poem – `Alicante’

43c une orange sur la table, picture

Ink and wash, with Winsor & Newton and Daniel Smith watercolours, some soft very old Lechertier Barbe pastel, Saunders Waterford rough watercolour paper 200lbs, 30×22 inches.  2nd March 2018.


 Jacques Prevert

Une orange sur la table
Ta robe sur le tapis
Et toi dans mon lit
Doux présent de la présent
Fraîcheur de la nuit
Chaleur de ma vie

(An orange on the table
Your dress on the rug
And you in my bed
Sweet present of the present
Freshness of the night
Warmth of my life)


The image of the orange and the dress is a powerful one, and a reminder that the juxtaposition of thoughts and symbols provides them with a dynamic which is more than the sum of their parts.  The whole poem is luscious, exotic, poised – the orange may roll off the table – you are perched precariously like a seabird on the edge of a Parisian night.


Jac May

23rd February 2018



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