Non sei fregato veramente finché hai da parte una buona storia e qualcuno a cui raccontarla (A.Baricco – Novecento)
Monviso is a candid cream cornet which invites us to taste di sweet day, while from Carignano we are moving to Val di Susa. The snowy Alps in this sunny winter morning transmit a sense of imposingness and protection, like if nobody but the wind could get over them. Moving in the direction of Sant’Ambrogio, from many miles away you can notice something on the rocks of monte Pirchiriano.
The profile of the abbey stands on the hill, getting always more defined while we clock up the miles on that way. We’re already thinking about the magic of the place waiting for us. If it is spectacular the fact to be nestled on the rock in a so perfect way that you cannot understand where the mountain finishes and the man’s work starts, even more surprising is its geographical position. The famous Mont Saint Michel in the north of France and the Santuario di San Michele Arcangelo in Puglia (south of Italy), are not simply equidistant from this abbey, but they form with it a perfect straight line. This angelic line, more over, continues north touching the Saint Michael’s Mount in Cornwall and the incredible Irish Skelling Michael. On the opposite direction, just draw a straight line on the map to cross the Monastery of Simi Island (Greece) and to end the travel on the top of Mount Carmel in Israel.
The woods we cross to climb the impervious hill are almost spectral, full of that magic aura which impregnate all the legend of Archangel and of the place of worship dedicated to him, each one linked to a place hard to reach but which, when you conquer it, reveals to you a bridge to link the spirit to the sky.
To climb into the walls of the Sacra is a strange sensation, almost of disease, of oppression. But to exit on the top is a liberation from every thought. And to enter in the church on the top of the building is an emotion. The prohibition to take pictures inside is maybe an advantage, because the eyes, the mind and the soul are incredulous and what we have around could not be trivialized with a shoot.
We hit the jackpot with something that make our visit even more emotioning. In the mass which is starting there is a choir of the Alpine, who exactly today made a trip here from Trentino. The echo of latin himns, wrapping us, make us to travel back to the days in which these stones have been posed one on the other to find, and to create, a link from the natural and the supernatural. All we can do is to gape in amazement and to close the eyes to dream.
Pictures of Eleonora Burroni
LEGGI QUESTO ARTICOLO IN ITALIANO: Sacra di San Michele. Viaggio al centro della Via Angelica.