The color of writhium is a light titanium grey – the new new surface of the electric skin of the world. Each day more edges add to clouds of big data rumbling around in dark halls with blinking lights. The mistakes I’ve made and the memories mislaid. I know where to find them if I’m that keen. But the map of the surface is just writhium.
The photograph crackled when i looked at it the second time. The first glance was fine. I had printed a heap of them, only to find this one of a tree with a blank grey Northern sky of late winter. I’m sure the photo was fine, but then a great metal crack appeared zooming through it. Like it couldn’t restrain itself. It just had to be. Life is so like that at times, everything seems fine and then an irreversible crackle sounds suddenly and you struggle to mend the cold enormity of it and maybe even pretend it is not there. But it is, real and larger than the tree you so carefully cultivated for years. You see that evident sometimes, divorced people tear their brittle life photo memories apart, or fold then in half and keep their ex facing the hardboard of the picture frame, while they cheerfully look out into the room from a scene from way back. Perhaps the folding types want to keep the ex there, just in case – perhaps they can mend the whole thing somehow. Hope to mend the love that was, now lost in an instant.
Still the crack itself is not a gap, it’s a thing dividing the brittleness of the scene. I went back there, to the park with the tree in it. And yes, i felt i had to go an touch the metal of the tear in the air, spiking up like lightning in reverse. It was cold and heavy with condensation to touch and I felt no calm with its seemingly infinite jagged height. Made of hardened stainless steel and welded together, it’s permanency in the face of future storms looked assured. The rent in the photo had turned into a real thing. A spire of substance, permanence and worth.
Still there is hope and a faith in mending. Love is something which can be rebuilt and mended. There is still time to take another photo of the tree. Just the tree this time, steady in focus with my back leaning on the cold of the spire. And so the new photo shall not crack.
“I got a bunch of old planes from a the bloke who I got that active respirator from.”
” he only wanted a few dollars,.. did you want to take a look at them ?” – My Dad said.
We went down to dad’s shed and he had three planes in a plastic bag.
” Can I try the handle – do you want to keep this one ?”
” Sure – if you can use it – why not have this one… I’ll keep the other two., you should be able to clean it up. – he said”
We searched through the pieces in a bag and dragged out the ones that looked like they fitted. I brought them home on the weekend and slightly been looking at them. It turns out to be a slightly rusty but probably still useable Record Plough Plane, circa 1934, made in England and I’ve never used one before. There are some pieces missing, but
The question is:-
1934 – it means its old, very old, pre-WWII – and apparently a collectors item – worth a lot more than even my dad paid for it. Maybe over 100 times what he paid for it. So — should I keep it as a tool, as was my original intention, or sell it on e-Bay as a collectors item ? Should i keep it till it is 100 years old and then try to sell it on eBay in 2034 ?
I may do neither – I’ve seen British TV shows where heritage buildings are restored and preserved, but always with an idea that the original parts, preserved are still obviously the original. So as a tool – i could use it and wear the original blades out. I could find new screws to replace the missing ones – making sure they are a different colour or head shape perhaps ? It was made to be used or collected — that is the question. And if collected – restored and collected ? and if used restored and used for another generation ?
I think this may be the beginning of a new journey.
White, icy, damp and strong, the snowman appeared in the courtyard as if just visiting. We fashioned him, or made him into something fashionable with his New England Patriots bling [the week before the superbowl]. If you build a snowman big enough, life-size, you cannot help but want to get a picture with the guy. He with Clive’s hat keeping his snowy head warm and his glaring orange eyes, spinning around in eye sockets from the wind… and his frozen carrot nose, borrowed from the kitchen in the lobby. The twig for a mouth made him rather grim so we tried to cheer him up a bit with the Patriot’s bling.
It got colder and wetter as the rain started, and we left for the warmth of the lobby. A short time later we looked out and our poor Patriot, standing there toppled over and became another pile of snow and was no more. He had lasted less than an hour but in his short snowy life had been kind enough to stand quietly for a snapshot with one of his creators.