Looking at an angel…


800px-Angel_by_Michelangelo_-_1 (470x353)“I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.”  Michelangelo

To me this is one of the most beautiful quotes I have ever heard.  A quote which shows a glimpse into the heart of a man, a vision through his eyes, an understanding of his soul.  A soul who could see further and deeper than the raw, cold material standing before him.  A heart who could see beauty where others could see none.

I often wonder how long Michelangelo sat sweeping his eyes over every swirl and every grain of marble, reaching out with his soul to connect with the beauty within.  How long his hands caressed the surface, kissing with his fingertips, searching for what was buried beneath the course surface.  Did he whisper softly to its very essence, resting his face against the rough edges, listening for the notes that would sing a heart song?  Could he, in his minds eye, see the angel longing and pleading to be set free?

When he picked up his tools for the first time did he strike making a strong impact attacking the stone or did he chip slowly?  Slowly and gently allowing the stone to reveal its depth.

How long?  How long did he spend amongst the grime and the dust?  Covered in the crystallised minerals that filled the air and showered down, piercing his skin.  How many cuts to his arms, to his hands, to his face as he cajoled the jagged edges to become smooth and rounded?  How much of the gritty shards did he breath into the very core of him?

Did he suffer moments of disillusionment?  Did he wonder whether he had made a mistake?  Did he throw his hands up in despair, wondering the value, wondering his part?  What made him carry on?

When he first saw the angel emerging from the debris, how did he feel?  Did he stop and rest his eyes and breath in the moment?  Did he know then that the time spent listening was so valuable, the time he took to hear, to see, to feel?  Did he shed a tear?

And the final, polished masterpiece?  Was he overawed by what he saw?  Did he realise what he had helped to come forth?  The beauty eternal?

Why do I wonder?  Because within each of us is a sculptor, each of us an artist.  Each of us hold the tools, the tools of our actions and our words.  Tools that can be used in a beautiful way to draw out or in a brutal way to destroy the beauty waiting to be found in each of us.  For within each of us is an angel waiting to be seen amongst the dirt and the grim, waiting to be shaped, waiting to be created, waiting to shine.


Inspired by Daily Prompt: Immortalized in Stone

3 responses to “Looking at an angel…

  1. Pingback: THE DEATH OF DEPRESSION « hastywords·

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