Friday, January 29, 2010

Mystery of Mona Lisa

I read this morning in the Star Tribune that Scientists are again itching to dig up Leonardo DaVinci's body. They want to solve the mystery of the Mona Lisa-- to find out once and for all if she was he: Leonardo himself.

But isn't Mona's delicious mystery the whole point? That funny little smile. The knowing eyes. 

Even the endless debate itself -- about who she was or was not -- fuels the fun. Alessandro Vezzosi, the director of a museum dedicated to Leonardo in his Tuscan hometown of Vinci, said in a telephone interview,

The Mona Lisa is "like a mirror: Everybody starts from his own hypothesis or obsession and tries to find it there."

And what about that tomb? Located in Amboise, France, my Susan says it is very understated. Just a little room in a little chapel perched on a hill. 

Leonardo could be in there. Or he could be lost forever. If they open the tomb, they will know. And the mystery will be gone.

I love a good mystery. At my house, there is a whole floor I am not allowed to explore. When my people disappear down the stairs to the basement, I wait, head on paws, and sigh. I imagine the basement as place of wondrous things - velvety dark corners, mounds of unchewed bones, musty boxes packed with doggie toys, nests of plump rodents ripe for the picking, tubs of chewy cat turds. I watch the cats as they ascend with Mona Lisa smiles, cobwebs clinging to their whiskers and cat food on their breath. And I sigh.

Like the Scientists, I can't deny that, as soon as my permit was approved, I would bolt down the stairs for The Knowledge. But I would lose something. Possibility. Mystery. 


  1. Carmella, words can't express how much I enjoy reading your blog.

  2. Thump, thump. thump! (my tail wagging).