Writing assignment - describe a silk dress
In Euler’s Cottage, the tiny white brick house with the blue window frames my grandparents used to live in, there stands an oaken wardrobe in the corner of the upper-right bedroom. Inside, on a mahogany hanger a 1950s style ballerina dress is squeezed between a dark brown winter coat and the grey skirt my grandma almost set on fire that one Christmas Eve. Every thread of this Chinese silk costume reminds
the insightfully that something so beautiful was bought with the lives of hundreds of mulberry silkworms that were boiled to death in their cocoons to get this unbelievably light and almost living fabric. Woven together the fibre slides through one’s fingers as if it was not cloth but the mere idea of a garment. The material is marked by endless hours of training decades ago and in the dim wooden box that is the wardrobe this dancing uniform is not unlike one a G.I. would wear at a military drill. Only the evening sun reveals the secret of the popping rose tone colors when a beam of light meets the fabric and is bounced back into the eyes of the intrigued. At the back of the dress the shimmering flow of silk is broken apart by an orderly line of the tiniest white-brown round buttons. It is said was told that they were made of the horn of a wild rhinoceros giving the wearer a link to the rumbling rhythms of ancient Africa. In Prague, Budapest and St. Petersburg this simple-looking costume de ballet transformed Tchaikovsky’s music into the struggle between life and death till the ballerina who was my grandmother put it in this closet and never looked back.