Young Masaccio died before his paint had dried, but his time-battered fresco tells all: how man in the midst of figs and wine reaches for the whole banquet and loses all but the crumbs, which taste like poison.
Their sin is fresh; the doors of Paradise slam while heel still crosses the threshold, driven out by the upraised sword of a crimson-winged messenger of God who points their way to a world of dust. His flowing garment billows around their nakedness.
They walk toward us, look like us. His woe is inward, head bowed. His hands cover darkened eyes; from his mouth, muffled sobs. Yet he strides forward to face the wilderness which yet he does not comprehend.
She does. Her foreshortened face, skull-like, gazes up into the looming abyss. Eyes strokes of gloom, from her mouth a scream of agony for what she sees ahead: needles passing in dirty rooms, children shrunk to skeletons, men strapped with bombs.