Stations of the Cross show.
This piece started its life back in September of last year, specifically the evening we celebrated the Eve of the Exhaltation of the Holy Cross. As part of the service, Father John read from a sermon by St. Theodore of Studios, Priest and Abbot, 826 A.D., and the words caused a very powerful and visual reaction in me. Though I began the piece soon after that night, it's taken this long to complete it for a number of reasons, primarily because it meant so much to me and I so wanted to convey all that I felt upon hearing those words, and that caused just a smidge of performance anxiety, thus fear, thus procrastination.
Well, now it's done. I hope I have captured the essence of St. Theodore's words.
"How precious is the gift of the cross, how splendid to contemplate! In the cross there is no mingling of good and evil, as in the tree of paradise; it is wholly beautiful to behold and good to taste. The fruit of this tree is not death but life, not darkness but light. This tree does not cast us out of paradise, but opens a way for our return."
"This is the tree upon which the Lord…healed the wounds of sin…"
"A tree once caused our death, but now a tree brings life."