There is a plaque on the front wall. “Gustave Flaubert, French writer, 1821-1880, lived here while-“ but then the letters shrink impossibly, as if on some optician’s chart.
We walk closer. We look in at a window. Yes, it’s true; despite the carnage some delicate things have survived.
A clock still ticks.
Prints on the wall remind us that art was once appreciated here.
A parrot’s perch catches the eye.
We look for the parrot. Where is the parrot?
We still hear its voice; but all we can see is a bare wooden perch.
The bird has flown.