Deja Vu at Shoreline Park

Photo © Peter Y. Chou— Palo Alto Baylands Nature Preserve
"Two snowy egrets at opposite ends of Baylands pond"
Foothill College Day Hike Class, October 4, 2013

It's a scene I've seen somewhere before—
two mates not talking to each other
steaming inside in stony silence.

Here at Shoreline Park, two egrets stand
at opposite ends of the Baylands pond
seemingly in discord, and my mind

flashes back four decades ago when
first seeing that marriage montage
scene in Orson Welles' Citizen Kane.

Gregg Toland's camera shows Kane
sitting close to his newly wedded
wife at the breakfast table smiling.

Bernard Hermann's matching score
is a lilting Waldteufel waltz
showing the married couple's love.

Then the music becomes louder and
discordant as the couple exchanges
harsh words, sitting further away.

Finally the waltz is bleakly played
on violin high squeaks as they sit
at ends of the table in silence.

Using swish panning, scene follows scene
with the table lengthening showing
dissolution of a marriage in minutes.

Now I ponder on these two snowy egrets
at opposite ends just like that scene
from Citizen Kane and I wonder—

What could have upset you two so much?
Did he not share those jumbo shrimps with you?
Was he out cavorting with another?

Come on! Make up and love each other!
I've come here not to see you quarrel,
I've come here to see you sing & dance!

        — Peter Y. Chou
            Mountain View, 10-10-2013

Charles Kane & Emily happily married
Citizen Kane Marriage Montage

Charles Foster Kane & wife further apart
Citizen Kane Marriage Montage

Charles Kane & wife at opposite ends
of breakfast table in stony silence

Two Snowy Egrets Dancing
Arthur Morris Photos (1999)