Julian's Rose

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Novel extract

“The poster was my most cherished decoration: a 30”x40” reproduction of The Starry Night by Van Gogh. Its peaceful village illuminated by the night sky, filled with whirling clouds, made me feel at home. The tall cypress tree in the foreground of the painting symbolized fragility, as the cypress was known to die when it was cut too much.
    Art filled voids in me that I couldn’t explain. A legend said that when Van Gogh painted The Starry Night, he wrote a letter to his brother about a big morning star that looked unusual to him during the day. He made it part of the drawing. In college, I’d learned that the brightest star in the painting was the planet Venus. The Greek symbol of love was completely hidden among the rest of the stars. It felt like a symbol of finding love in places where we least expect it. I looked at the swirling blue clouds in the painting as I soaked in the morning rays coming through my window.”

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