Richtje Reinsma | Basje Boer

Richtje Reinsma
City (2011), Richtje Reinsma, graphite, watercolor pencil, color pencil, pastel crayon, 21 x 29.7 cm


The thought occurs to me that none of this is real.

Amsterdam in the rain. I like the way the lights reflect in the puddles of water on the streets. I've always preferred the lights - streetlights, neon signs, and headlights - to people.

Each corner represents a different memory, each street is a chapter of the book that is my life. I recall images, sentences, a single word, a gasp of air. But I can never get that one look right; the chronology of the night, the touch of his kiss, my head against the pavement. The impossibility of going back in time makes me furious and excites me all the same. The past is a movie with an ever-changing ending.
This is where the video game arcade used to be, with the pink flamingo painted on the wall outside.
This is where I sat at the bar, endlessly calling his number on the pay phone.
This is where my friend used to live. I can't even remember what she looked like. (Think about all those empty spaces where there could have been pictures.)
This is where I got that bump on my head. (It's still there.)

Amsterdam, waiting for the dark. The present is ugly, it lacks poetry. I'm waiting for the lights to go on.
I like the way memories of the past mix with memories of the movies I've seen, the books I've read. The present is ugly and unwavering.
I demand a love story
This is where I got my first bike.
This is where I took a picture of a drunk tourist, his eyes obscured by a glass of beer. (I hung it on my wall.)
This is where we laughed instead of fought.
This is where he pushed me against the wall, not to hurt me but to kiss me.

I can never get that look right, that strange look when he left. (It's still there, that bump on my head.)

Amsterdam when the lights are on, and everything is possible. The thought occurs to me that none of this is real.
This is where I'm forever calling his number from a pay phone, asking the bartender for change.
I've always preferred fiction over reality