Café Crem

Art, Music and Words around The Coffee Table

Papa Napoleon

by Miki

I have hesitated a lot to put an entry about my “Papa”, how we call our Dads in France. As you have surely noticed already, I have no problems to shout out my positive feelings to the world. But when it comes to negative emotions, I am much more reserved. I guess it is a question of bashfulness, guilt, kindness, or even weakness, but of respect too towards the concerned persons… Anyway, my youth with my Dad is a series of emotionally bad experiences, I would even say catastrophic. But I took the decision not to write about it, I feel I have not the right to tell that story in public, or perhaps I am simply too weak. But if you would love to know, you might take the essence of it in the title I gave to this entry…

So today I will just show you a portrait I made of him some years ago, it was a birthday present for my mother. Let me tell you that he EXACTLY looks like that. As my mother saw the portrait, she said:

“When we are dead, you will cry when you will see that portrait, he looks so alive!”

I didn´t wait for their death to start crying…

Portrait of Miki´s Parents


January 20, 2008 - Posted by | Art, culture, family, love, men, Parents and Children, personal, random, women, writing | , , , , , ,


  1. Yes, It’s exactly him, my grandfather that I use to call “Pépé”. I am always fascinated by your portrait, Miki, and particulary, by the real expresion of his eyes…on the same time very strong and intelligent, with a touch of hiden feelings. Even if I am only his granddaughter, he has always a (maybe too) big influence on the choices I do in my life. I am always afraid of disappoint this leading, demanding and surprising Man (on my eyes). Thank you for post this painting tataita!

    Comment by contessine | January 20, 2008

  2. Thanks, sobrinita!
    Independently of what I feel about my Dad, I am happy to see that your comment is quite positive to him.
    Yes, he is very intelligent and surprising… in fact, always when my life became difficult and “I lost the plot”, it was him, and not my adored mother, who showed the most understanding!

    Comment by Miki | January 20, 2008

  3. And the title is perfect too…I would say that like Napoleon (or Caesar), he arouses a lot of diferents feelings, sometimes conflicting, but always extreme in my hart and my mind. Napoleon changed the destiny of a country, pépé leaves his mark in the story of our family.

    Comment by contessine | January 20, 2008

  4. Your English Muse seems to stand besides you today, Contessine…
    … and all the other Muses too: wonderful comment!

    Comment by Miki | January 20, 2008

  5. I forgot to say: if you show Metal Miki to Papa Napoleon I´ll deny everything, and especially YOU!

    Comment by Miki | January 20, 2008

  6. Too late…But when he was listening to Metal Miki, he banged his head, did a mysterious sign with two fingers, like a kind of horn, and screamed: “Oh!Yeah!Rock is not dead!” Surprising man…

    Comment by contessine | January 20, 2008

  7. You are so inspired today, Contessine, what a pleasure! Kevin nearly peed his pants has he read your comment! But I warn you, YOU will have to clean up his mess if you keep being so witty!!!

    Comment by Miki | January 20, 2008

  8. Oupsss! The Muses are gone…But if you need someone to clean, ask mémé.

    Comment by contessine | January 20, 2008

  9. This is a portrait I’m sure is so realistic… not to put too fine a point on it, he looks almost like he could turn his head and look at me looking at him.
    He definitely takes centre stage while your Mom looks like she’s happy to be included but content not to ruffle his feathers too much. My parents were exactly the same way.

    Comment by Bonny | January 20, 2008

  10. My father has wonderful green eyes, full of light and wit and charm when he is looking at a woman… you would love it, Bonny, if he turns his head and looks at you!

    Comment by Miki | January 20, 2008

  11. A truly ‘charming’ Gentleman! 😉

    Comment by Bonny | January 21, 2008

  12. An absolutely extraordinary portrait! I can see that he is an extremely intense sort of character who would have a great impact.

    Comment by Susan Cornelis | January 21, 2008

  13. Very original mise en page, Miki! I suppose he has, just like my dad, an autoritarian streak… controling, domineering… Napoleonish? But blood is blood (or you can call it destiny) and I suppose we have at least 1/2 of their genes, bad AND good…

    Mine will make 80 this year, in September… I look at me and ask myself how he can stay so optimistical, so strong in his convictions… but that<s me…

    Comment by iondanu | January 21, 2008

  14. Oh yes, Danu, blood is blood, and there are manythings I have inherited from my father, good and bad.
    Many times when I see him or call him, I am confronted with his bad sides -what a pity really, because he has so many good sides!- and there is a voice within me saying:
    “Never become like him!”
    And when I catch myself, sometimes, being like him, I immediately stop, because this voice is very loud within me. The main thing I never can forgive him with my heart, is that he hurts too much the persons I love (my mother, my brothers, Contessine, …). I can cope with the pain he inflicts to me, but not with the pain to the others!

    Comment by Miki | January 21, 2008

  15. And thank you everybody for the beautiful compliments concerning this portrait…

    Comment by Miki | January 21, 2008

  16. This portrait captures Papa et Maman perfectly! Miki’s father is indeed a mix of contradictions, and although I am very aware of the side of him that can be hurtful, I also see the delight in his eyes when we visit, and how he laughs at me! He calls me “Maori” which I find so funny, as that was my nickname at school (long story!) We discuss Rugby, and the all-blacks, which is frequently hilarious, as I don’t like rugby, and neither of us understand what the other is saying!

    Comment by kevmoore | January 21, 2008

  17. What a wonderful portrait of them both! I am really impressed.

    Madame Monet

    Comment by wpm1955 | January 25, 2008

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