Paris is a funeral and all the Parisians are attending,

Dressed in black, their mourning is never ending.

Creativity has died and with it too,

Individuality has become a taboo.

To be accepted, you must fit the mould,

And as such, never be bold

In your choice of clothing

Your self-expression.
Instead you’re expected to be part of the depression,

Join the ranks of those in black.


They say


In fact

I don’t want to fit in

I want

To stand out

To wear bright colours, prints, new designers.

Paris is a facade, a face to admire;

It’s banned the ugly to create

A city that now feels out of date.

Beauty is not identikit

Beauty cannot be restrained.

Paris has failed,

It does not realise

The funeral is its own.


Words: Charlotte Sutherland-Hawes

Illustration: Charles Meryon, L'Arche du pont Notre-Dame, 1852. Etching