HAPPY EASTER : BUONA PASQUA!
Piero dellla Francesca’s “Resurrection” at Sansepolcro is described by Aldous Huxley in his 1925 essay as “the world’s best picture standing there before us in entire and actual splendour.”
Thanks to British artillery officer Tony Clarke who, remembering Huxley’s description, defied orders and held back from shelling the town of Sansepolcro, this extraordinary painting was saved. We visited it a few years ago and its visual effect is greater than any photo could possibly reproduce.
There’s even a street named after Tony Clarke’s action (or non-action) in Sansepolcro.
Will there be any streets named after those who will save our world heritage sites in Iraq and Syria, I wonder.
What’s Easter but resurging earth
beyond dark season’s blight;
reliving flesh, unseeding birth,
the new day over night.
Soil’s primal violence, cracking roots,
holds shaking of the skies,
tumescence of fresh shoots,
And must they fall upon this day
that ripped the veil in two?
And shall world’s peace still yet betray
and ever war be through?
The people weep when they might joy
at life anew refound;
could love reform what hates destroy
as Christ rose from the ground?
Sins fall like bombs upon the heart
and tear away its breath:
where is the strength, so far apart,
to conquer living death?
F. L. P.