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The cabbage white butterfly


On March 28, Ryuichi Sakamoto died. March 28, this day that evokes the birth of Victor, another loved one who died on August 28 at the age of 28. Life and death meet as often at times chosen by a more or less just destiny.


I had the feeling that a golden thread connected me to Ryuichi since that famous morning two years ago when, eyes barely open, I heard a melody. A melody that I knew, that I could hum but of which I did not know at that moment the composer. I then look in film music, because it seemed to be able to perfectly accompany images, a story on the big screen. I found it ! It's her, it's him. "Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence" by Ryuichi Sakamoto.

At that time, I could not play the piano, having never had an attraction for the black and white keys. But this piece, this composer calls me, challenges me to learn it and know how to play it. It's not an easy piece for a beginner to start with, but stung by the challenge and the call of this melody that takes my heart away, I put my hands on the keyboard and start note by note, bar by bar, to reproduce this melodic beauty that I hope not to alter.

I will know how to play it, but when? It does not matter.


During these 2 years, I work on it, repeat it, add a melody, lyrics in English on the tears of the sky, and a shy haiku essay which I entrust the proofreading and correction to the parents of my ex-companion, half Japanese and renamed "Chous" by me experts in distinguished nickname.


This Wednesday, March 28, 2023, I decide to record it to send it to you, Ryuichi.


A few days later, I learn of your death, which occurred that same Wednesday, and it freezes my blood. Yes, I'm cold and it was like that every day since you left. I can't get warm.


When I share this strange concordance with my father, we are on the terrace in front of my house and we see a white butterfly fly away. My father then said to me, "ah the cabbage butterfly!". I ask him to explain, because I know the famous saying, "White butterfly sign of good weather", but not that of the cabbage butterfly. He tells me that these little flying beings adore cabbages and all meet in the gardens or fields where they grow at this time. Alright Dad, I didn't know that.


The pianist friend with whom I had recorded the piece 5 days before, gave me the last copy of a journal relating the life of the composer. Several pages are devoted to him and I stop, just like my heart when I arrive on the passage of his childhood memories:


"In the 1960s, there were still nature areas all over the place. There was a cabbage field right in front of our house. In the summer, it was often covered in butterflies, and it turned completely white."


Then, still in this same diary which seems to be addressed to me, he quotes the year "1978", my year of birth, that of my ex-cabbage and that of Ryuichi's creative explosion. I explode yes, sadness not to have been able to meet you.


What to do with these signs which strike the cells, which capsize the body, which flood the senses?

I am upset. My emotional machine since the death of my mom, last August 17, does not compromise. Reason filters are gone permanently. Without making a fuss I cry, I also laugh with more distant frequency and I don't understand anything with great regularity.


If there is an answer to be found, I believe that my hands resting on the piano can begin the path of discovery. Leave aside futile and often useless doubts when it comes to living your life as a musician.


Time speeds up or slows down horribly depending on the emotions that run through our subtle bodies.

I do not solve the conflicts of the world, I do not save anyone, my conscience is clear on this subject but I offer from time to time a few white butterflies in the soundscape of those who accidentally fall on me.

It's a little, not a lot, a little all the same, a lot for a person who can't hear.


On the other side of the world, a pianist plays for Victor and my mother delicate melodies that my heart will sing forever.


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