It had ceased being a house some time ago, instead becoming a graveyard of marble sculptures, all depicting the same subject: a six-winged angel without a face.
This time would be different, though. The sculptor resolved to create something new. He found what little room remained in his home for a fresh block of marble. He brought out the hammer and chisel like he’d done hundreds of times before. The husk of rock metamorphosed into various forms within his imagination. A crestfallen knight with hidden secrets? A bear and a bird who are close confidantes? Whatever he made, he knew what it wouldn’t be. The sculptor clapped his hands; he had a good feeling about his artistic endeavor this time. It would finally be something new.
He sculpted for countless hours only to create, by complete accident, yet another six-winged angel without a face.
The sculptor sat, despondent, for days afterwards. How many sculptures in a row had it been now? Fifty? A hundred? A thousand? There was nothing else. Only faceless angels left, right, up, and down. Faceless angels in the living room, in the den, in the bathrooms, in the backyard. More faceless angels than furniture.
But he would not give up, not yet. He had another idea—a good one. He’d carve a giant, plague-ridden rat; the least angel-like creature he could imagine. The libidinal energy of creation surged through his veins the moment his chisel met malleable marble. He carved the claws, the tail, the fans, the mottled fur, and the beady eyes.
Except when he finished, there was no plagued rat but instead a six-winged angel without a face. In a rage, the sculptor smashed every angel in his home to pebble-sized bits. He went to sleep amidst marble dust and angel chunks.
He woke up to see all the sculptures restored to their pristine forms.
No matter. He’d simply sculpt something else.
Another block of marble. Another day spent tirelessly chiseling. Another six-winged angel without a face.
Again, another day sculpting and another six-winged angel without a face.
A novel idea—nay! A novel approach.
Sculpting with his eyes closed. Still another angel.
Sculpting with a blunted chisel. Still another angel.
After innumerable days filled with faceless angels, madness finally took the sculptor. He charged at a blank block of marble with chisel in hand and flailed at it violently, red-faced and screaming until his vocal cords went raw.
A six-winged angel without a face.
There was but one solution.
The sculptor drove his chisel through his hand. Blood sprayed everywhere, sullying the white marble with a rapidly oxidizing red. His consciousness faded quickly, but if he survived, it would be in a world where he wouldn’t have to create anymore faceless angels.
He awoke to a room of white statues, and a perfectly pristine hand ready for sculpting.
So be it, then. The Sculptor took his chisel and inserted it up his nose. He smashed the tip with a hammer, sending the chisel directly into his brain.
He woke up in a house filled with square blocks of marble—canvases of infinite possibility that he knew would only reach the same result, forever.