i walk past this statue every day

this is a story about the fallen angel, and the little girl he loved from afar.

he couldn’t remember when he’d started watching her, but perhaps she’d always stood out amongst all the people on the earth below. every day, he watched her go about her business. some days she was happy, and shone like the sun. on these days, she wore beautiful dresses, and her laughter sparkled like stars. other days, the skies darkened in frownlines above her eyes, and he wept to see how sad she was. but she didn’t know about him, for how can a little girl love an angel?

one evening, trying to see which building she’d entered to rest from the night, he leaned too far over the edges of heaven and fell down, down, down. he could have used his wings, he could have flown back up, but as he was falling, he thought maybe this way, i can get to her.

but angels break, just like humans do. and he crashed onto earth, arm torn off, wing gone. and angels, angels don’t survive on earth for long – this is not their home. but as he lay there weeping at the freshness of pain he’d never felt before, his whispered plea remember me fell into the dream of a sleeping sculptor.

in the morning, the sculptor woke up. moving amongst the animal sculptures in his studio, he suddenly decided to do something different… perhaps something human, perhaps something angelic, perhaps something myth.

years later, the little girl would walk past a street corner, where there used to be a dilapidated workshop, and discover a brandnew gallery. in front, on the street, was a giant statue of an angel curled over, looking like it was hurtling through the sky, one arm bent back, one wing furled in. cast in dark green bronze, it had rough edges, smudges, clayed streaks, dents, handprints, strokes, holes where the sculptor had left his marks. it was beautiful, haunting, familiar, and she changed her route, so that every day, she could walk past. the statue was high enough so every now and then she would stop to stand under his face and look up, wondering what the statue would say if it could, what the angel had been thinking as he’d been falling.

one day, she would place her hands inside one of the handprints, and realize, to her surprise, it was a perfect fit.

And I´d give up forever to touch you
´Cause I know that you feel me somehow
You´re the closest to heaven that I´ll ever be
And I don´t wanna go home right now

And I don´t want the world to see me
´Cause I don´t think that they´d understand
When everything´s made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

– Goo goo dolls’ Iris

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~ by translating for peas on June 20, 2010.

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