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580 CHRISTIANITY AND LITERATURE The Savior of Zvenigorod For Andrei Rublev, upon learningthat one ofhis icons was discovered in a barn. Lowing of beasts, soft brood oflight on hay. Yes. A barn marked him from the start of things. It's no surprise he would have it this way. For centuries, the hay loft steps held, beheld his gazewatching over the comings and goings, the groaning, lowing of beasts. See now: the soft brood oflight on hay each morning as the eastern door swings to greet the day, to move the cows to milk, to make the milk pails sing. Tellyourselfit's no surprise-he would have it this way. An unlikely find in an unlikely placethe milkmaid fell from her stool at his showing, beneath the lowing ofbeasts, the soft brood of light on hay hanging a halo around the Savior's head. How to say he hung above, yet below? On a board's belly, risingsay it plain. It's no surprise he would have it this way: A stair board made from an icon-that is to say, the deesis tier, the painted prayer, aloft the confessing lowing of beasts, soft brood of light on hay. (Say, oh say!) -It's no surprise! He would have it this way. SARAH CROWLEY CHESTNUT ...


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