A SONG OF LOVE
This story is dedicated to A.M. Pacino
She entered my life in the most astonishing way. We were attracted to each other and she was the most exquisite woman that man can dream of.
She loved a fast life and fast cars. Her life was too short, but her memory will be in me forever.
When I wrote the first edition of this story was in February of 2004. She helped me revealing to me all the facets of her personality and in this way, I could create Annemarie, the heroine of “A Song of Love”
With her help Annemarie is alive with her great personality, sensibility and femininity. In this story I infuse what the best in A.M. life was as a lover and a seducer. No men could resist her exquisite interpretation to be the best lover, understanding life as it is with all the possible passions.
It was the day of celebration, the day he had waited for all his life.
His friends and business partners were together for the occasion in the room of a famous restaurant in Venice. When it was time for the speeches, some of those present praised him and his capacity as a leader in the construction industry.
Now it was his turn to reply. Proudly he rose from his chair, holding in his hand a fine Venetian crystal glass, which reflected in the light, the pale golden color of the bubbling wine. With a few words he thanked those who praised him and invited those present to a toast. He drank the Spumante in one gulp, then, his glass slipped from his hand, disintegrating on the marble floor, in a cascade of a thousand sparkling diamonds.
It was pain in his chest, and he raised his hand to his heart in a vain effort of relieving the suffocating sensation. He fell heavily toward the hard floor with the pain painting a grotesque mask on his face. He was dead before he reached the floor.
Noises of confusion and concern rose from his guests, but someone who had known him from the past, took this as a sign of God, the final punishment for the cruelties he had committed in the remoteness of his past.
Destiny concluded in this way the existence of an incredibly tenacious man, who ran his life on the verge of doubts of his “Modo Vivendi” on the verge of legality, justifying his conduct with the motto, “Who dares wins” and the success in his life proved it.
Venice in 1938 was, and has always been, the usual romantic tourist city with many hotels and restaurants around Piazza San Marco and facing the Canal Grande.
The Manin Restaurant was one of the most popular, owned by Gilberto Levi, and Annemarie is the very attractive manageress.
She is tall, with green eyes, and shoulder length hair. She takes great care to be elegantly dressed and has a particular predilection for the gentle touch on her skin of expensive lingerie ‘like a perennial caress of a lover’ she used to think and ‘this has to go hand in hand with the most exquisite French perfume.’
Gilberto is attracted to and loves Annemarie. He has asked her to marry him, but she has refused.
“Darling not because I don’t love you enough, simply I don’t want to spoil the harmony and beauty of it. Marriages impose routines that in time will kill the best in us, the passion of our senses. I adore our life as it is now, and I want to preserve it forever.”
At the Manin they have a new piano, but a problem arose when they couldn’t find a talented musician. In a fortunate circumstances Annemarie found him at a charity concert, playing his latest creations.
Marco was in his early thirties, dress in a fustian jacket, which is too large, and pants creased at the knees. His long black curly hair is greasy and not properly combed. While he plays, sweat runs from his brow, but he was a gifted musician. He touches the keyboard lightly and swiftly in a lover’s caress and the notes of the music descend to the soul of the audience.
‘I found my pianist.’ Annemarie thought, and at the end of the performance she went back stage. Meeting Marco with a smile she said, “Mr. Benvenuti, we are looking for a pianist to perform at the Manin Restaurant. If you are interested and this would be a permanent position, could you please call tomorrow afternoon? I will recommend you to Mr. Levi, the proprietor. I’ll try my best to negotiate a good contract for you.”
Gianni Venturi was an engineer from Milan in his mid-thirties and the nature of his work took him periodically to Mestre, the industrial area of Venice.
He liked to spend his free time over ‘The Serenissima’. It was on one of this trip that he noticed the most exquisite woman that a man can dream of. She was tall and her fitted dress showed the curves of her body, giving result to her femininity. Behind she left ‘The scent of a woman’ the exquisite and unique fragrance of her French perfume.
The casual encounter in piazza San Marco, on that day, completely changed Gianni’s life, it was a vision of a woman that since then he could ever forget. He became obsessed, and wanted to again meet the woman of his dreams.
Whenever he was in Venice, it became imperative to him, to return to Piazza San Marco hoping to see her again.
It happened one afternoon in autumn. The vaporetto had moored at the San Marco’s Jetty and the passengers disembarked, moving across the piazza, followed by thousands of pigeons waiting for those people who feed them.
Annemarie was one of the passengers. Swiftly she moved across the crowd, rushing to the Manin for her evening shift.
Gianni didn’t hesitate and approached her.
“Don’t be afraid, but I need to talk to you. Give me a couple of minutes to explain. I wait for this opportunity for two years.”
Annemarie was surprised and amused with this introduction, “I’m running late to work. Come to the Manin restaurant as a customer. I’m the manageress there. We can exchange a few words there.”
Over the following week, Gianni was at the restaurant every evening. He enjoyed the delicate food, but he couldn’t really tell Annemarie of his burning passion for her. At closing time he waited outside for her, but she was always with Gilberto, returning to their apartment at the Lido, an island at the entrance of the Laguna twenty minutes away with the vaporetto.
It became a frustrating situation for Gianni, who was devoured by the burning desire of love. In his jealousy he couldn’t accept the evidence that Annemarie was with someone who was her lover.
At the end of the week, and time for him to return to Milan, he left a note for Annemarie, “Can we meet in the morning at the Café Danieli in Piazza San Marco? It’s my last day in Venice and I have things to explain to you. I’ll be there at ten.”
Annemarie was curious and pitied him.
“What kind of man is Gianni?” she thought.
He greeted Annemarie in the morning and ordered Campari for both of them, then he spoke, “The first time I saw you was in June two years ago. It was in the afternoon and you were walking in the Piazza. In my memory I have a clear vision of that day. You looked divine and your femininity was accentuated. You left behind the scent of your perfume, arousing my desires, and immediately I fell in love with you. Do you believe in fate Annemarie? Do you believe love at first sight is possible? Do you know that our future is written in the book of destiny? Therefore, you are the woman that fate had destined to become my wife, do you believe that is possible?”
Annemarie temporary lost the use of speech, in front of such an unexpected claim from Gianni and she wasn’t sure how to judge the sanity of this man.
“I saw you twice in the past few days walking across the Piazza. You were far away, but I recognized your profile. I stood unnoticed by you while you walked toward the quay with a man at your side.”
Nervously Gianni was pulling the knuckled of his fingers, while looking directly Annemarie’s eyes. Inquisitively he kept asking, “Who is that man? Is he your lover?”
Annemarie was astonished. She couldn’t believe Gianni who kept on asking.
“That day and the day after I followed you, but I was shy to stop and talk to you I didn’t know what would be your reaction or what that man would have told me. Do you understand why Annemarie?”
Annemarie just silently moved her head in a negative answer.
“Now I finally speak to you. I can tell you that the first time I saw you I found you so beautiful, so elegant. The charm in you was irradiating over me. After two years, when I saw you again was still fresh in me the vision when I saw you firstly. You were more beautiful the ever. Over the time I tried to imagine who you were and where you were from. I wanted to hear the sound of your voice and I was terribly jealous of the man with you. When a few days ago I met you again in the Piazza I recognized you immediately. The scent of your perfume confirmed me that you were the same woman.”
While Gianni talked Annemarie kept wandering about this man, unable to completely understand his passion. She thought he was a visionary, and not completely sane.
Gianni looked at her, hoping his words would be accepted by her, and continued,
“I want you to be my wife, please understand me. If you think I’m mad, I don’t really care.”
“My dear Gianni, I haven’t words to answer you. What you ask is unexpected like a summer thunderstorm. How can I possibly love you? We just met, and more, you must know that I have made up my mind of not marrying you or anybody else. It’s much too premature for me. I’m too young for that and to feel obligations toward a husband, a family and a house. For many more years to come I want to be free from anything chaining me down in life. Just now I want to be free to love who I want and as often as my desires demand. Maybe, a day in the future, I would accept you as my lover, and I’m sure if I do, would be an enjoyable time for both of us.”
“No Annemarie, how can I accept what you say?”
My dear Gianni, I’m sure that it would never be more than a flirt between us. I have a good advice for you. Return home, somewhere in your city you will find the woman that you have beautifully created in your dreams. I’m certainly not that woman.”
End Part One