[La Sagrada Familia or The Holy Family is an unfinished Roman Catholic Church in Barcelona, Spain. Its architect, Anton Gaudí, was a Catalan architect who significantly contributed to Barcelona’s modernist movement and built several iconic structures during his life. Construction on this grand church, often considered Gaudi’s masterpiece, began in 1882 but its design is so complex and ambitious that even today, it is far from complete.]
unpolished, rough cut,
a work in perpetual progress.
with one architect,
but I have become
a trencadís1 of different artists.
Every person I meet comes and
carves another pirouette in stone.
A thousand workers
mould and polish me;
they chip, chisel and hurt me
taking more than they can give
hammering me hollow as I powder at their anvil.
Some paint me
the gentle swishes
of their brushes lulling me into love.
they put another coat here, one there,
hiding the uglier blemishes, painting new wounds.
I start and stop thus,
some days growing tall –
a glorious castell2 well-balanced, proud.
Some days a pillar is pulled down,
And I start over, dejected but never outdone.
I thrive thus; a back and forth of sorts:
A continuous creation; unendingly unborn.
1. Trencadís or pique assiette, is a form of mosaic used in Catalan modernism, where broken pieces of colourful tiles are used to build intricate patterns.↩
2. A castell or castle is a human tower made during festivals in Catalonia, which has an intricate process of assembling and dissembling. ↩