A Quite Remarkable Gift

Pieta-a, originally uploaded by Theresa111.

Time stands still whenever my eyes alight upon a piece of artwork that catches me unawares, and just like a stare-me-down-contest, I find it hard to tear my eyes away. It matters not if it is a painting, a woven tapestry, a photograph, an intricate piece of jewelry, a fashionable garment, a decorated room, a clay pot, a sculpture, a quilt, an English garden or a particular shade of pink ribbon in a little girl’s hair. Once the object d’art has stopped me in my tracks, I’m hooked and must drink in its beauty, appreciate the craftsmanship, labor of love and most often experience the bared soul of the artist.

Years ago, my Father and Mother took Mary and me to The New York World’s Fair. My it was grand. A few years prior to this, our family lived not five miles across the bay from Manhattan, on Staten Island, NY. Happily we were once again in my beloved New York City.

There were so many things to do, new foods to try, a Belgian waffle with sweet strawberries and whipped creme fraiche. There were modern and scientific displays and moving sidewalks, upon which the public would stand to be moved automatically through another country of the world.

We entered the country of Italy as Mother wanted to see a display about great Italian artists. After standing in line for what seemed like hours (I was young and impatient), we were allowed to walk up to the important section. I knew it was because they had placed red velvet ropes with brass clips to keep the public back and away. A hush ensued and there were signs telling us that we were not permitted to touch anything.

As we moved closer to the focal point we beheld the most breathtakingly magnificent sculpture. I was taken aback and stunned that any human being could make marble look like that. Had no idea such a rendition of this existed, yet here it was. Not ten feet away from where we stood transfixed, was the Virgin Mary cradling Jesus, after he had died upon the cross.

How had someone thought this up let alone tapped away, day after day on cold hard marble, to produce perhaps the finest work of art in the world? Her sorrow and hopelessness had been captured … her son was gone. It was evident to all who passed by in hushed reverence.

The artist was Michelangelo, and his sculpture was called The Pieta`. He was just a young man when he sculpted this masterpiece, his most important work.

Standing there I felt my cheeks damp with hot tears … for His death, and for her sadness, yet inside, I was elated to see what a tremendous gift God had bestowed.

I sincerely wish that one day you might stand in the presence of something so grand and beautiful that you are captivated and cannot look away.

Merry Christmas.

* Revised from my original post April 25, 2007.
Original and not to be duplicated.


4 thoughts on “A Quite Remarkable Gift

  1. Theresa, that was a very beautiful piece of writing and a very beautiful memory. Thanks for sharing it with us, especially at Christmas time. May your holidays be happy and bright, and your New Year happy, healthy and exceeding prosperous!

  2. Hey my dear loving Theresa, ]

    I read this post when you first put it up and I was getting ready to go on break with my hubby and I just am now catching up…BUT when I read it I have to tell you I cried beautiful tears. The writing just held me spellbound. I have been in the Louvre in Paris when I lived there (for a very short time) when I was 19. Although I think the Pieta may have been there at the time, sadly I did not see it, but I have ALWAYS been PROFOUNDLY drawn to any photos and articles on it. I think it is my most favored piece of art and I will one day have to see it.

    I think it is the LOVE that I feel emanating from the stone that moves do deeply I feel punched in the gut with emotion. Did you know that during the 70s a guy smashed the Pieta. I actually cried when I read about it. Here is a link if you want to read about it. You not want to…but they have since repaired it.


    I am so glad I got to come back and leave a comment on this post as you and I both are so deeply moved by the timeless, wordless magic of this creation.

    I am sending you so much love and wishing you a truly remarkable year in 2010. You really deserve all the good the world has to offer. Love, Robin

    PS OH!! I keep forgetting to tell that I no longer live in Australia. I now live in New Mexico, USA. I’ve been back in the states now for many years, but since my book (coming out next year) is about my time in Australia there is much on my blog and website about Oz. :))

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