He began to paint with broad, strong blue strokes, swirling back and forth across the prepared white surface in graceful arabesques. Presently a seated figure, female, emerged. Marek remembered a sculpture by a Polish sculptor, Zamovski, whose work his figure was beginning to resemble. He also had a feeling of deja vu, as if he had done this painting before. As the picture filled out, mostly in blues and reds, the other barge passengers were transfixed.
    Periodically as he worked, the artist stood back to see from a greater distance how the work was progressing. The seated figure remained very linear, her lines pure and clear in white, red and pale blue. She leaned forward over her raised left knee her right leg bent beneath her. She clasped her left ankle with her left hand and bent her head forward; either sad or looking down at something beneath her. It was water. She was looking at her own albeit pale reflection in a pool (or was it a reflection of Marek?).
    The background was ambiguous. It was mostly dark blue, divided up loosely, here and there with red squares, and laced occasionally with white swirls and flourishes, and red diagonals and little touches that suggested angels’ wings or butterflies.
    Echoe herself, for in his mind Marek had already named her, looked transparent. Predominantly of deep blue and blue-greys, with a hint of the red tracery of the background here and there, she also sported patches of glowing colour within her body. Her forearm or her thigh for example, suggested yellow and cerulean blue views, strangely reminiscent of sun kissed beaches and the sea beyond; which emerged or receded according to the viewer’s focus.
    The story Marek was illustrating, albeit unconsciously, was of Echoe and Narcissus. According to Greek myth it was a story of unrequited love. Echoe had fallen in love with Narcissus, who was too preoccupied with self-love to pay her any heed. Echoe was heartbroken and the Gods for reasons of their own, punished Narcissus by transfixing him in his self-adulation. He was made to stare at his reflection in a pool of water, as was his want - forever. As the mood of the picture developed, Marek took pity on both Echoe and Narcissus, and freed them, by merging them into a shared single being. As a final flourish the artist removed the reflection with more swirls of red and blue, freeing them, her, from the constraints of celestial retribution.

    As he finished, the memory came flooding back. He’d painted this picture before! Other than the removal of her reflection he’d painted Echoe already, in the same manner, in another place, another time, another life. Before he had time to dive too deeply into his reverie however, Echoe stretched her lithe limbs, and looking up into her creator’s eyes, stepped from the painting to stand before him!