Trafika Europe 11 - Swiss Delights

Odile Cornuz


(a man of indeterminate age, in the grip of emotion)

Her notebook was open: words on the smooth pages of graph paper. Next to the notebook, an unfolded handkerchief, clean as a shroud, lay on the corner of the kitchen table. I approached it suspiciously. But there was no reason to be afraid: the house was deserted, the light dim. The notebook offered itself to me. The handkerchief formed a white spot on the blue tablecloth, like a cloud. I glanced at the notebook. I would have liked to read a few sentences that weren’t meant for me, for the thrill of catching hold of a secret. Unfortunately, the message was addressed to me: a list of errands. How could I have believed for a second that she would leave something intimate exposed like that, on the corner of the kitchen table? Still, there was a hint of a clue, one of those potential minor upheavals in daily life: she never used cloth handkerchiefs, much less white ones. She’d pulled a similar trick on me three years ago. She wanted to leave: she’d thought it over, I was impossible to live with and our relationship was stillborn. But… in the name of our love and her great humanity, she left the door ajar. The sign, that time, was a pair of sneakers. She’d left them in


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