Wednesday, July 12, 2006

a sculptor has a block of marble

a sculptor has a block of marble and wants to carve the shape of a woman and he wants to show her in a posture of grace and fertility, bestower of fertility and he remembers a woman he once saw with a child in one arm and a basket in another and how she carried herself

so he starts scraping away at the block of marble which has sat very composed as a block of marble for years and years and years, solidly and unwaveringly a block of marble. This marble has its own currents and eddies of stones, unvisible flows of other minerals, where the glowing hot rock cooled and stopped, waves, pools, veins.

so the sculptor with the feeling in his chest and long years of carving in his mind and eyes and hands cuts into the rock. and the stone yields here and refuses there and there is the little push pull of living as they sit together in a quiet room.

over long hours the sculptor's hand (which is perfectly imperfect) slips and he makes a mistake. He cuts too far into the stone. This happens every time, in fact several times every time. He knows it will happen, slightly adjusts his sense of the the stone, the space it is, depth and isness. and the statue to be is changed slightly.

and each motion of the sculptor's hand is an individual, and each piece of marble, each current and vein running through it, each chip that flies off the block is an individual. and thousands of individuals accumulate until they form shape and gesture. the arm, the elbow, the wrinkles, the pores of the woman.

the sculptor and the marble and the individuals carve a sculpture, which could never quite be the image in his head, and it changes with every motion, and becomes something all its own. Every intention changed by motion by the world, every motion falling back behind and new motion coming into being, every perfection compromising with beating heart of raw mortality. every statue an isness.