poetry, prose, and image by Brittney S Holland

Monday, September 26, 2011

Good things come

to those who wait…and wait…and wait. Patience. I am a life-long student of this virtue.

one of 140 saint sculptures adorning the top of The Vatican’s colonnade

In 1980, The Vatican announced its plan to restore The Sistine Chapel, and in 1983, National Geographic did a spread on the restoration’s progress. I remember this article and how I poured over its pages of text and image. Since then, visiting the Sistine Chapel has been a dream of mine.

Twenty-eight years later, I finally set foot on that sacred floor. I stood beneath Michelangelo’s magnificent work which gleams from the ceiling above. I found a seat along the stone wall and quietly wept.

I do that sometimes. Weep…in the presence of beauty. Please don’t laugh.

I am one who feels wholly and deeply. If I were a superhero, that would be my power. It’s both a blessing and a curse.

When I planned this trip, there were only three places I planned to visit. This was one of the three. Yes, I hear your collective queries. Why not more? Why not the magnificent piazzas? Why not the Roman ruins? For me, the answer is simple.. Because I didn’t want to be rushed. Because this trip was not really a vacation. Because this journey was very personal and very spiritual.

Did I take any pictures for you? No. Not there. Photographs are not permitted inside the chapel. Even if they were…I still wouldn’t have pulled out my camera. I find it difficult for me to photograph certain things. In this instance, I am not worthy. That is a calling for others far more gifted with a camera than I. I am called simply to witness.

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