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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Precious, Rare And Beautiful

Do we not all have at least something we hold to be most precious, rare and beautiful? I believe the phenomenon is nearly universal. Regardless of the individual, regardless of personal means, regardless of the object itself, do we not clutch close those things that resonate within our soul, that evince a passion, a love, a remembrance or a pleasure? The violinist caresses his Stradivarius; the hunter sleeps with his beloved hound. An elderly man keeps safe a battered, but prized, tin soldier; a mechanic lovingly polishes a vaunted and prized “dream car.”

It may be a child’s simple snow sled, dubbed “Rosebud.”

It may be a brooch, a painting, a worn and tattered book of verse, an heirloom or a lock of hair…it may be almost anything, anything at all…but to a singular soul it will forever be a source of magic, comfort, pride or pleasure. We feel blessed to have our precious, rare and beautiful gifts…we revere them.

So we hold close to our hearts that which we consider precious, rare and beautiful. We lovingly caress them. We provide safeguards. We preserve them. We dare not lose them or dispose of them or sell them to another. We would dash into a burning house, risking life or limb, to retrieve them; if misplaced or lost, we would search the world over to find them. For to lose forever something precious, rare and beautiful would be to suffer ineffable pain.

I have my own precious gifts: a hasty portrait of my father, sketched in charcoal by an accomplished artist dying of starvation in a refugee camp. He captured my father’s soul and that soul speaks to me at every glance. I have a poetry anthology that has journeyed with me near and far. The pages are dog-eared; many are torn. The spine broke decades ago and the pages have all worked themselves loose. Shabby though it may be, it is my best-loved, and most cherished, tome. There are paintings in my home that fill me with awe and wonder. I could not bear to live without them.

* * *

I ask you, then: “What about the human heart?”

What makes an object precious, rare and beautiful, if not the emotions engendered? And what, in our existence can engender the greatest, most profound of emotions if not the human heart? It seems simple enough to comprehend, does it not, that it is the human heart that is the most precious, rare and beautiful gift that may grace one’s life?

And yet…and yet…

I have failed to revere my most precious gifts. There have been times I’ve treated a loving heart with disdain. There have been hearts I’ve neglected, hearts I’ve betrayed…hearts I’ve taken for granted.

My losses, my shame, haunt me.

Perhaps it’s a function of age. Wisdom accrues, even to a fool, if given time enough and tears enough. Perhaps it’s because I’ve come to know that I would dearly give up that portrait of my father if only I could look into his eyes again. I know, in my very marrow, that I would gladly, ecstatically, barter my poetry and my art for the chance to embrace the woman with the soul of a poet, or wake to the heart of an artist beating beside me.

* * *

Of all that is truly precious, rare and beautiful, it is the human heart that must be revered and treasured and loved above all else.


* * *

13 Comments:

Blogger Snow Queen said...

My most ttreasured item is a ring my parents had made for me. It was modelled on a ring my mother wears, and her ring was inherited by her from her Aunt. I use to wear the original occasionally because it suited my hand. My mother saw how much I loved it and so had one modelled for me that I wear all the time. Tae anything from me, except that. It is a beautiful ring, and I will inherit the original when my mother dies (my 4 sisters know this hee hee) but I would give this up if it meant that my mum stayed alive longer. Me inhriting the ring means my mum will be gone...and well, I do not want to think about that. I would even give up my kingdom...errr if I had one !

Sun Mar 11, 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger Fiona said...

Interesting. That made me think and take stock.

I have a few things that I treasure. My father's picture and some jewellery he has given me over the years. My dog Lupo. 11 dried roses (there were 12, but one didn't survive the 20 hour journey in a suitcase).

And that, really, is it. And even then, if I lost any one or all of those things, the memory of having had them, the memory of the moment they were given to me, will never be erased.

People are always what I've treasured the most....yes, hearts. When we lose those, either through death or separation or just the attrition of life and lost loves, we lose a part of something. But we don't lose everything for we will always have the memories. And those go with us from any burning building, through any hardship, they can't be bought or traded or replaced.

Sun Mar 11, 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger Sunny Delight said...

You are correct Jonas, there is no object on this earth that I cannot live without, I own several that have special meaning, but the hearts that belong to those I love....those are the most precious, most cherished of treasures, those I must hold gently, softly, protectively, I want no harm to befall them. I only wish them joy and beauty in this life. And there is much I will do to ensure that happens, even the breaking of my own.

Sun Mar 11, 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger Twilight said...

I came upon your blog via "Next Blog" yesterday, Jonas. I'm popping in to say how much I enjoy and admire your writing - it's your "precious, rare and beautiful" gift, and one which you give us the pleasure of sharing.

Ann (aka Twilight....lol!)

Mon Mar 12, 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger deb said...

I don't know that there is anything that I treasure, maybe old photos. But it is my memories that I do treasure, I guess photos remind me of "That time when...".

I feel disconnected from everything and everyone right now, probably not the best time to discuss, hearts and such.

Mon Mar 12, 09:17:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Thank you, Ann, for your gracious compliment! You made me blush.

And Deb, a tired mummy with a sore foot may be excused from feeling less than moved by hearts and such. You'll be fine, though...nothing stays the same forever.

Thank you all for your comments. I'm touched to learn what moves you, what constitutes your precious, rare and beautiful gifts. It does my heart good. It truly does.

Tue Mar 13, 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger chumly said...

Yes this is a precious, rare and beautiful piece. Thank you.

Fri Mar 16, 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Thank you, Chumly! Drop by any time.

Sat Mar 17, 03:29:00 AM  
Blogger Sally-Sal said...

My most treasured item is something that I haven't yet found--
A man who sees me for me, and chooses to love me anyway.

Sun Mar 18, 03:47:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

I believe most of us want that very same thing, Ms. Sally...to be loved simply for who we are; to then be able to stand naked before each other without lies, or secrets...and without fear.

A love like that truly is precious, rare and beautiful.

Sun Mar 18, 04:19:00 PM  
Blogger anna said...

The photo you posted at the end took my breath away. There's something so magical about love that has endured.

Like some of the others have said before me, my memories are probably my greatest treasures. The items I treasure are only symbols of those memories. I hope to keep my memories for as long as I live.

Sun Mar 25, 08:20:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

Dear Anna,

May you live a long and happy life, filled with beautiful memories galore!

Mon Mar 26, 05:59:00 AM  
Blogger anna said...

Thank you, Jonas. That's very kind of you.

Thu Mar 29, 09:30:00 PM  

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