Color – ultramarine monochrome love story

Color – ultramarine monochrome love story

The diversity of colors in flowers is a miracle that leaves you speechless.

Flowers of many colors take your breath.

But looking at flowers that make drawings, stage small performances or give light shows – you drop dead, unless you have developed some meditating skills.

All those phenomenal qualities of flowers have been processed by me in many posts at my Polish blog (now closed because I don’t like being gagged), so if interested follow the menu link tracks Fotowiersze with photo-poems, and the second with links to similar stories in prose.

A good starting point could be a double story about the color ultramarine. BTW, for this international blogging portal it could be the icon-color, because everything here is and we all to each other are ultramarine = from overseas.

Because I have been instructed by the admin of the weekly photo challenge not to respond with announcements referring to my previous publications (anything they invent as a topic I have already covered many times), I want to retell in my English a story about a flower drawing on its petals a pattern to create a playground for an ultramarine love story, but it doesn’t manage to tell the story anyway because there is not enough place for it.

So my task today is how not to tell a story involving a girl and a boy in love, a bad father, a repulsive suitor, with action in temples, palaces, houses and gardens, on lakes and islands, with fire and smoke, and pigeons on the sky – by using only one color, the ultramarine.


Waiting for your appetite to grow let me tell first what triggered my decision to chose the monochrome as topic for today’s post.

Coming back from my meeting with doctoral students yesterday I noticed through the tram window a bill-post covered with posters announcing a coming performance of a play in Warsaw’s Teatr Studio.


Poster © Teatr Studio

This is also a great love story, based on one of the best-known Dutch novels, Turks fruit (1969) written by Jan Wolkers. There is an English translation Turkish Delight by Greta Kilburn with whom I became friends during my first longer stay at Amsterdam in 1976. At that time I have been preparing my first translation of some chapters of the novel to be published in a literary journal, together with an interview made by another colleague of mine.

The poster as you see is almost monochromatically blue, the face of the actor is very expressive but without exaltation and it covers good the main psychological issue: pain and mourning about a great and lost love.


No one was left to tell the story of the love between a mandarin’s daughter and his young secretary. Let’s start not telling it with the photo of the crocus


that blossomed two years ago in my garden and enticed me to reflect upon it on 29.03.2011 in Ultramaryna monochromatycznie.


A hand has drawn the trees with a pencil of one color. A thick trunk and boughs running  aside in equal distances.

????????  020crocus-willow-kwp

One of the trees was drawn first, it has its full shape with boughs on both sides of the trunk. The other trees are drawn later, their boughs are placed only on one side of the trunks in order to avoid crossing with the crown of the first willow. That place is occupied. But the central tree spreads its boughs so far that they cross the neighbor’s ones.

The willow I’m talking about is quite different from the Chinese I’m NOT telling about. Our willows look like this:


No story will tell here itself: there is only some place on the petals of the crocus for the willows and as they bow at the top, it is not above the temple or the small lean-to built against the mandarin’s palace to enclose the disobedient daughter whom her father promised to a rich duke although she was in love with her father’s poor secretary.  


There is no place for all of it so the hand that operated the colored pencil refrained from pushing other motifs on the small canvas. So, consequently, there is no boat they used wisely after the lover had received her message:

Pick the flower before somebody picks it for himself.

There is no bridge from which they jumped on the boat escaping the chase, nor the small island with a cabin where Knoon-She and Chang have hidden themselves.

The canvas had to be much bigger, but there are no such big crocuses.

And the drawing hand had to have at its disposal another crayon that could have drawn the fire. Fire (see the yellow crocus in the icon, how it is melting snow) can hardly be painted in a monochromatic mode.


The willow pattern alone has to suffice.

Look for the willow pattern. Fortunately it can be found everywhere, as animations, cartoons, even on dining plates.

Like this one


about which I told another photo-story, actually a regular photo-poem consisting in a series of haikus (watch the link there to a longer trailer from New Zealand).


 © A. Dąbrówka

Informacje o Andrzej Dąbrówka

Tenured professor, Institute of Literary Research (Polish Academy of Sciences), Warsaw.
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8 odpowiedzi na „Color – ultramarine monochrome love story

  1. WM pisze:

    Just amazing post! What does it mean „being gagged” in this context? „To „gag” jako „kneblować” czy „kpić”?

  2. I felt gagged as author because my post has been hidden by the admin. And it was my only blog.

  3. richterb wrote on 29/06/2013, 10:14 pm
    I particularly like the picture of the willow tree – fabulous detail!
    You mean the real willow (growing still in the village of my origin), actually two willows grown together, or rather one willow split in two and separated in a dancing contrapposto?

  4. Pingback: Teatr i sacrum w średniowieczu – drugie wydanie | adabrowka

  5. Another willow pattern plate


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