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Sunlight takes eight minutes to travel 93 million miles from its source to our troubled shores. Given the times we live in, I sometimes wonder if it’s worth the trip. (I suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder.)
Once more our days grow longer, and just as surely our memories of the coldest winter in 20 years will soon grow shorter. I say, Goodbye, Old Man Winter. Good riddance. Take your stormy cohorts with you, and leave my corner of the world free in peace.
To celebrate spring’s arrival I’ve hung a solar-powered prism in my window. It has plastic cogs and wheels and see-through mechanisms. A battery of filaments harnesses its energy, spins its octagonal glass, and showers my living room with a spectrum of colors.
Red. Orange. Yellow … Colors twirl, dance and weave a collage of images and encounters …
MONDAY: I take a campus shortcut for breakfast and bookstore browsing. Along the way I’m amused to find a mouse sharing my (yes, my) sidewalk. As a matter of courtesy, I pause and acknowledge her perfect right to be what she is and where she is.
I watch without comment or censure. She — not sure whether big or small has the right of way — waits me out, her tiny eyes searching where best to nibble next. Sensing I respect all God’s creatures, she unhurriedly seeks shelter in a nearby parking structure.
Because of semester break the structure is empty. Cars, Jeeps, vans are gone – perhaps sparing her micro-mouse life for a few more days. She hides behind a lump of greasy ice, contracts into a furry ball, and shivers for all she’s worth. Helpless to assist, I move on. As usual, I will be asked for spare change on the street.
WEDNESDAY: Handsome Larry waves. Young. A friendly maintenance man. “Thank you for worrying about me. I’ve changed my mind,” he says, all smiles. “I called the Army recruiter and turned down the deal. I’m going back to school. The university pays 50 percent of tuition. I don’t want a uniform or a body bag. Not this year or ever.”
THURSDAY: I’m among 40 PR and media types viewing “Magnificenza!” the Michelangelo/Medici exhibit at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Magnificent it truly is, and unquestionably a viewing opportunity not to be missed.
It’s 10 a.m. I have an hour to take in the glorious splendor of Late Renaissance Florence Art: its paintings, tapestries, sculptures, etchings, drawing and cameos.
Leaving my colleagues behind, I eagerly seek out Apollo/David, Michelangelo’s prototype for the world-famous statue of David.
I find Apollo/David, and for a few minutes, like a jealous suitor, I have him to myself. He is breathtakingly conceived and sculpted, beautiful to see, a splendid solar god of music, dance, poetry, and the arts.
For him, I just might leave family and friends and settle down for my sunset years in a villa in Florence (or an air-conditioned condo in Farmington, to be sure).
Bathed in overhead radiance, he seems to breathe, stretch, come alive. He is earthy, muscular, other worldly, five centuries young, heroic, timeless. I’m but one of his many admirers. We come and go, talking all the while of Michelangelo.
Welcome sweet spring. Let there be light!