Arrivederci

Our last day in Positano, and Antonio Sersale, our dear host, just passed me this message he wanted to forward on to everyone who attended this year. Thank you for making it such a wonderful conference. – Hannah

Arrivederci…

I am standing by the entrance of the Hotel, my hands are waving goodbye, the sun is in my eyes, clouds playfully chase each other over the horizon, smiling faces zoom by on motorcycles.

The last participants of Sirenland are leaving, emptiness engulfs me, my world was filled for one week, writers walking with books soon to be published, teachers with papers filled the silent corridors of the hotel, waiters walking softly not wanting to break the spell, now silence, the wind, the sea. How slowly a cosmos is created, how suddenly it is gone.

I remember the readings, our tears, the laughter, each writer embracing us with his words, words and faces that will remain. A world came briefly to Positano. Now it is gone. I walk through the classrooms where so many hopes came to life, the furniture stares at me, I want to ask each chair what was felt. Only silence, the secret will remain.

New faces arrive, each filled with hope. I welcome them, I embrace them and as I do I wonder if all Sirenlanders feel the emptiness I feel each and every time I look at that furniture.

Ciao,
Antonio