Nothing Gold Can Stay
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf,
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day
Nothing gold can stay.
I came across this poem this evening and thought that it would go quite well with this photo that was taken at Manuela Paul Cavallier‘s Parisian atelier earlier this year. Guess which creature this belonged to?
Manuela worked with Pierre-Yves Rochon on the interiors of a signature suite (Suite d’Or / Gold Suite) during the restoration of Prince de Galles, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Paris. When we visited Manuela’s workshop with some journalists, she shared with us how she learned the craft of gilding – which is/was dominated by men – when she was in Italy.
One of my favourite moments was when she picked up a thin sheet of gold leaf with a brush, blew at it and grabbed it in mid-air, only for us to see it disappear into nothingness. It was quite astonishing.
Reading an interpretation of “Nothing Gold Can Stay”, I thought this poem captures quite well the ephemeral nature of that sliver of gold. What do you think?
P.S. Another favourite moment during our visit came at the end when she offered us homemade clafoutis with nectarines, together with some bubbly from a friend’s vineyard. It was so sweet of her!