pWdumaNjA-6CEEBhRoD5euxNETs When All This Actual Life Played Out: From a hotel window: Ieper

10 September 2012

From a hotel window: Ieper

Ieper (Ypres), Belgium
10 July 2012

Sitting in this window, I watched dawn break. A bird perched on a chimney sang the sun rise, liquid notes in the soft, cool air, such beauty in its voice. Light touched the quiet buildings and silent streets below me. It was so incredibly peaceful. 

I tried, sitting there, to imagine the sound of cannon, the shouts of men, the crash of buildings as they fell. I tried to imagine smoke rising at the edge of the town. 

Birdsong filled the sky. A duck swam in the channel below. The rhythmic sound of footsteps approached as someone jogged along the pavement, and I watched a man open his garage and pull his car out into the alley. All very peaceful. 

So much blood. So many lives. So many years of conflict. And I wondered if that was really the price for the calm and lovely town laid out before me.

Tech stuff: Taken with my Nikon D40 in the early morning light. Speaking of tenacity, Ypres was bombed flat during the course of WWI. They rebuilt. The town is magnificent.

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