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Full text of "Laughing Torso"

LAUGHING   TORSO

and fiat. The view was magnificent. We sat down
and had our supper of wine, bread, olives and sar-
dines: one could never escape at any meal from the
eternal sardine—it appeared in every form—salted,
fresh, boiled and fried. Madame Foujita spoke in a
gruff and angry voice, even when she was not
annoyed, but that was not often. Foujita was
angelic and never answered back or said a word.
I don't think that she had ever seen br met an
English person before, and she would sit and gaze
at me in astonishment for hours. The South
American had apparently been very rich once and
was an ex-amour of Madame Foujita's. He had a
face like a hawk and a long thin body that was
rather beautiful and resembled an old ivory Spanish
crucifix. He was very Spanish and talked about
poetry, life, hope, and the soul. The Pole knew a
good deal about Spaniards and laughed at him
sometimes. Madame Foujita suspected me of
laughing at her too, but she was, I am thankful to
say, not quite sure. Foujita painted at home during
the afternoons. He did not use an easel, but placed
a canvas against a chair and sat on the floor with
his legs crossed. He worked with a tiny brush, very
rapidly. The South American sat in the sun, drank
wine, and blinked his eyes.
My Pole and I went out every day to find new
motifs to paint. After a week we saw so many sub-
jects that we thought that we would have to stay
there for about seventy years in order to accomplish
them. I tried to paint olive trees. I found them
almost impossible. One day we found a beautiful
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