Up close the monumental Great Pyramid
at Giza forces us to lose our preconceptions, no matter how lofty
they may have been. Primarily, we're not prepared for its extraordinary
message for humanity, a product of men (we continually remind ourselves),not
nature, though the latter has worked its magic. The ancient elegant
form draws us nearer, even though we fight to hold it at a distance
where our peripheral vision could absorb its overly-photographed
structure in a single frame. The camera can't find it, not truthfully.
It's an insult to think so, I say to myself while futilely shuffling
to record it on its thirteen-acre base.
It takes time to really see Khufu's
Pyramid. While standing perfectly still, wanting to hear exclamations
from no one, I gave this proud leviathan my all so that its incomprehensible
mass might translate into a conceivable scale. As I stepped closer,
the more the imaginary climb became the truth. Each block, now long
revealed by the elemental wearing of 4000 years, is approximately
one half the height of humans who are camouflaged in the comparison.
I would bring the image home with me promising myself to carry the
site in my memory, just as I had vowed each time before the Grand
Canyon not to forget the power of apparent infinity.