Thursday, January 21, 2016

looking for my lamb bone

Perhaps because nothing has edges, I like to think I can drive the point home in my own life -- run a reality check and come to some easy terms with what is easy.

And it was in this regard that I wondered this morning where my lamb bone was. Someone in future will find it and pitch it on the scrap heap, but to me, that lamb bone is important. I wonder where it is.

No doubt it is in some sloppily-saved collection of tools ... in the basement, maybe, or at the bottom of a tool box. The lamb bone is around somewhere and even if I knew where, I would be unlikely to use it as in the past. Still, it was a good friend once and spoke to the matter of edges that don't exist.

The lamb bone is precisely that -- a lamb bone saved up after a roast long ago, boiled to clean away any clinging meat and then placed among the chisels and hammers and files and sandpaper. I used it in some of my less-than-perfect carpentry adventures. I never was a very good carpenter, but I built several tables and I built the zendo and I built shelves and ... well, I enjoyed it and the lamb bone was part of the mix.

The bone itself is about ten inches long and knobby at each end with a shaft of bone between those knobs. It was something I used as a finishing tool. A ninety-degree edge on a piece of lumber; is "perfect:" But run a lamb bone over it and that razor-sharp perfection moves towards age and grace and warmth and, in my mind, a realistic beauty. The bone and its residual oils do what others might attempt with sandpaper: Run the bone along that edge and it presses the 90-degree "perfection" inward. It is rounded in the smallest and most smooth way.

Ninety-degree perfection is merely perfect. A lamb bone can perfect that and, in my eyes, dovetail with the edgelessness.

These days, there seems to me to be too much perfection and not enough edgelessness.

I wonder where my lamb bone has got to ... not that I have the energy to use it any more. 

1 comment:

  1. If tools or a story about tools can be charming --- these are.