I Found Her

The woman I’ve been look­ing for my entire life.

Her name was Christine. She was thin lipped. Frail limbed. Not the least bit cam­era shy, as she pulled her shirt up to expose a breast, like she had fall­en on the grass this way and the folds in her clothes rearranged them­selves on her body.

Here she is on a horse in the night. Here she is, grim-faced, cradling her son. There was a scar on her neck from a sui­cide attempt years ear­li­er, and through a series of pho­tographs, you could see the scar heal.

For sev­en years she was mar­ried, before she suc­cess­ful­ly jumped to her death from the 9th floor of an apart­ment in East Berlin.

A blink in my eye, a snap of some­one else’s shut­ter. A muse of flesh and blood. The Jane Birkin to Serge Gainsbourg. The Olga Ivinskaya to Boris Pasternak.

This is some­one who under­stood his art, his mor­bid­i­ty, his need to cap­ture her sui­cide in a frame, then pub­lish the image of her body on the pave­ment, look­ing down from the 9th floor, along with insou­ciant pic­tures of a teacup, a play­ground, a tank, three plants.

And as soon as I had found her, she’s gone.

Should I be hap­py that she exist­ed? Should I be sad that she’s gone? Should I be pun­ished for com­par­ing the women I’ve had to her?

Is this painful, or beau­ti­ful, or both?


  1. But I would like to know where I could see her?.

  2. I pur­pose­ly chose not to include pho­tographs or fam­i­ly name because I want­ed to leave the image of this woman — whom I could not do jus­tice describ­ing — up to the read­ers’ imag­i­na­tion.

    I’ll e‑mail you a link for more infor­ma­tion.

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