Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The hidden life of things

I remember sitting outside in the porch of a hut, high in the mountains. No maintenance asked, no maintenance given since the 1700's.

The quiet was pervading. I sat on a log in the snow, smoking my pipe and looking at the crystal clear, black sky.
The simplicity of nothingness, the beautiful feeling of not having anything to say or to do.
That feeling only very young or very special people can afford, of being simply alive.

Inside, an ancient stove, the oldest I ever saw, cracked open by the heat of the flame during centuries, was lightening that small space with its warm red glow. Probably my lust for ancient, gleamy things comes from there.

This is one of my favourite memories, choosing from many loved ones. Its quality is not the one of a dream.

Things usually invisible to everyone often had their moment of glory, maybe only once. But having been so important, even once, they somehow conquered their reality.

Invisible things. Those are the one I want to live with.

Touching something coming from the past you can feel Time unroll through its texture. A rusted screw that someone in some time used to build some unknown else. An imperfection in the carving of a wooden box (is that microscopic stain the human mark from a slipped scalpel?). The slight dent in a lens coming from the USSR. A small handmade cog...

Any object is a silent witness, and is waiting for that touch to unveil emotions and a small tile of the big jigsaw puzzle of History.
Today many things are happening in the world. Dictators are falling, people is dying, as many other times in the past. And nevertheless, or more probably because of this, today I am feeling better looking again at my invisible things, one by one. Because they will bring their stories along, silently including mine.



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