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Consider This

By LC Van Savage

Charming Alice, Where Are You?

Statues are wondrous things. I just love to stare at them, canít get enough of them. Imagine, taking a big chunk of something and slamming at it a few million times with a chisel or hammer, chainsaw or whatever, and actually making a thing, a shape, an actual life come out of that mass; a person, an animal, something.


What a gift. Iíd really liked to have been a sculptor. I tried it once but found it to be extremely labor intensive and so switched to writing, since hammering at a keyboard with oneís fingers is infinitely less taxing than hammering at a slab of something really hard with something really hard.



My imagination instantly takes over when Iím looking at those (usually) great works of statue art. There are so many around the world, many heroic, brilliant, many ancient, some looking to be almost alive. Sadly, many of the most epic statues have been toppled by some regime or bombed to powder by some stupid war. (Thereís another kind?)


I love to gaze into the eyes of statues, and know what? They kind of come to life for me. No, Iím not a woo-woo and I donít hear statue voices, but I do love to play head games with my, well, head, and it does help pass what might be a boring afternoon.


So, asks my head, what if statues of people, before they became grown-up statues, were once children statues? How about the Statue of Liberty over there in France, before she became the big green giant she is today? Did she laugh and play and dance about in green skirts and a green pointy crown, dreaming about guiding immigrant people into a big harbor in New York when she grew up? Did she consent to spend eternity doing that? Did she ever think her right arm would maybe get tired as she held a huge torch up high forever? Did she even imagine that people would be climbing up inside of her to peer out over New York Harbor and Ellis Island to watch the world go by? Or that a famous poem would be written about her? Did she ever even imagine that she would be one of the most famous statues in history? A symbol of freedom to people so dearly searching for it? I wonder.


And how about the Venus de Milo when she was a kid in Greece? Did she have her arms then? Did she think when she was playing around in the streets of what, Milo?, that one day she might be standing half-starkers in front of millions and millions of people in the Louvre in Paris France, worshipped for her incredible beauty, and wondering where her arms went? Do you think sheís glad sheís become such a symbol of feminine beauty?


And speaking of arms, poor Winged Victory is also missing hers. How was it for her, being a kid with wings on her back? Did the other kid statues make fun of her? At least she had a head when she was a young girl in Samothrace, Greece, where she was born around 190 BC. And were her peers jealous when she grew up to have one of the most powerfully sensual bodies in all femaledom and that she hung about with the likes of Zeus and Athena? Does she chat with Venus when the Louvre closes down at night?


Nike, Goddess of Victory, on a mighty shipís prow. What did she look like? I imagine her face even in childhood, was strong and beautiful, her thick, wavy hair streaming out behind her. Iíll bet she was a great kid statue.


I knew a kid statue once. Knew her well. Pure white marble, she stood on a cream and brown marble pedestal in the entrance hallway of my grandmotherís old home. She was a chubby, sweet, very young, naked child sitting on a stump, holding a butterfly on her open palm, smiling down at it, and there was a tiny, happy puppy at her feet. The little marble child was showing the butterfly to that joyful puppy. I wish I had that marble statue now and have often thought of trying to find her, but where does one start looking for a long-lost statue not seen by me for perhaps 65 years? Do you know?


Everyone who entered my grandmotherís home tossed their hats on that statueís curly childish head, but, outraged, I always pulled them off. I loved her and she had not been carved into life to be a hat holder. I named her Charmingalice. Iíve always wondered what kind of grown-up statue she became. Beautiful, I know sheíd be beautiful.


Hello Charmingalice, wherever you are. I miss you so much. Someday Iíll find you. Iíve never stopped searching and Iíve never forgotten you.


You can reach LC at lcvs@comcast.net. Her newest book QUEENIE is on Amazon and in local bookstores, or you may contact her directly. Her website is lcvansavage.com.


Click on author's byline for bio and list of other works published by Pencil Stubs Online.


 

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