Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Mermaid Bronze Sculpture

Cari Amici (Dear Friends),

I always loved the Grimm fairy tale of “The Little Mermaid.” Here was depicted a creature who had no soul (but wanted one), but knew what love really was. As a young girl, and even now I suppose, I am touched by the story of her figure falling in love with a human prince, saving his life when his ship capsized, and allowing another girl to take the credit and the joy.

As luck – and the nature of a good story – would have it, the Prince fell in love with the girl he thought saved his life. However, our heroine went through great personal costs (her lovely singing voice traded for a pair of legs to replace her tail, but sharp pains were felt whenever she walked or moved with those legs) and finally met her prince after she transformed on his beach. While he became enchanted by the youngest daughter of the Sea King and loved her in his way, she never gained his romantic love.

As his closest companion, she had to endure watching him marry another. On top of that, she loved him too much to refuse his asking her to dance for them all at the wedding, despite the physical pain the movements gave her. She had no voice with which to complain. The rules of her world dictated that as the sun came up the morning after her beloved had chosen another, her life would end and she would become sea foam, returning to the ocean, her natural life cycle cut way short.

During the night of the wedding, the little mermaid’s older sisters swam to the boat where the festivities were taking place. They, too, had been to see the Sea Witch. They traded their graces for a special knife. If the little mermaid were to use that knife during the night and kill her beloved and his new wife and let their blood run over her legs, she would have her natural life as a mermaid back and could return to her royal family.

The Little Mermaid stood in the dark bedroom of the slumbering newlyweds that night. Love completely overwhelmed her as she gazed down upon them. She could not harm them. She left them there and went to meet the sun. Her body became lighter and lighter. The sea was before her. But she felt herself lifting higher and higher. . . until she began to see small figures in the air beside her.

Because of the pure and unselfish love she had shown, she was being given a second chance to gain a soul. She had become a “Daughter of the Air.” Depending on the joys and sorrows of the children she was to witness, there was a faint possibility that over much time, she could gain a soul. It was not love, but a soul is something, isn’t it? And it is interesting that gaining a soul depended on the behaviours and whims (or love?) of others. Well, Grimm IS the name of the author, after all! Ha.

Sadly, from my point of view, the prince and his bride never understood what happened. They were oblivious to her pain. They never appreciated that in the hands of another, they could have died. They never knew how much she loved them. They never knew what happened to her. And worse, perhaps, they never knew that they could help her in her new search for a soul.

What I always liked about the ending is that idea that we do not know how our choices, our smiles, our groans, affect others. So, should we not do all we can to lighten the load instead of possibly denying one a soul or at least a chance at happiness? I have never seen the downside of a genuine smile.

Art Anniversary Promotion: Get more art for your buck. Hurry, this one-time offer expires on 15 February 2013.

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