“A great fire burns within me, but no one stops to warm themselves at it, and passers-by only see a wisp of smoke” ― Vincent van Gogh
By: Proserpina , 8:06 PM GMT on October 04, 2012
ABANDONED HOUSE, LOST HISTORY
A few years ago I wrote my childhood memories to honor my beloved paternal grandpa. I wrote about his story, his house where I spent part of my childhood, and the history of our ancestors.
Grandpa and our ancestors lived in quartiere di bel vidiri (il Belvedere), a complex of family houses where the Muscara’ dwelled since at least 1567. Il Belvedere means that it is an area from where one can see picturesque, magnificent panoramas. One of the far off vistas from this location is the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Aeolian Islands.
If interested in reading about my grandpa’s story, please go to:
Two other stories that might be of interest are found at:
(Il Magnifico Pietro Muscara’ is my first ancestor who lived in the ancient town of Librizzi. I found this information in the oldest documents available for me to read, the 1584 and the 1594 Census Records.)
Grandpa horses were housed in this area as indicated by the horseshoe. This is a cortile where the horses could enjoy the sunshine.
This is the street entrance to the covered area where the horses were kept. There used to be a beautiful wrought iron gate here with the family crest as part of the decorations.
Today, the house where grandpa spent his last days, and the rest of the nearby houses stand deserted, lonely, and abandoned. The only sounds heard are the memories of past generations clamoring to be heard so that they may tell us that once there was laughter, joy, and life residing within those crumbling walls.
Yes, the once vibrant, proud, and beautiful house is now decayed and colorless. The walls have fallen prey to the passage of time and to the relentless beating of the Sicilian elements. Weeds and vines are growing from the shivering walls, lording over the moribund building, triumphant in their conquest. The doors are open uncaring about the decay within, there is no pity for the lament of ancestors.
The above is one of the many balconies that used to adorn grandpa’s house.
Broken windows, crumbling stonework, pebbles disgorged from the eroded walls, fragments of memories.
Memories, stoically enduring the road to oblivion.
Ed e’ subito sera.
Ognuno sta solo sul cuor della terra
trafitto da un raggio di sole:
ed è subito sera.
Everyone stands alone at the heart of the world
pierced by a ray of sunlight,
and suddenly it is evening.
Salvatore Quasimodo (1901-1968), born in Sicily, poet, Nobel Prize Winner
All photos except the last one were taken by Melo Rifici. Last photo by anonymous.
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