Saturday, May 02, 2009

Because I do not hope to turn again

When you reach out, maybe your hand will hold. There is always hope.

On the road to buy a lamp I found a lamp on the road; and then I bought shells and rocks for my aquarium with no fish. A lamp on the road on the road to a lamp. A home for fish without fish. There is always hope.

I turned to buy candle holders, silver and shining bright. They were gone when I arrived. Then, as it turns out, someone's grandmother died and a pair of old blue-black flame-holders, tarnished by time, landed in my hands. They are restored. I hold.

I will build me a house upon a hill, and you to come will hold if you reach out. Very common, so I read, glass doorknobs of a dozen facets. I got glass doorknobs this very day. The other day I did not. Today, reaching out, I got them. Common, so it seems.

Glass doorknobs.
Because I do not hope to turn again
Because I do not hope
Because I do not hope to turn
I will build me a house upon a hill, and you might reach out. If you do, you might hold a common glass doorknob. And enter in.

Amy R. Hughes, "The Beauty of Glass Door Knobs," This Old House magazine.

Glass doorknobs date back to 1826, when the process for pressing molten glass into molds was invented, but they didn't become ubiquitous until after the United States entered World War I, in 1917. Cast brass, bronze, and iron doorknobs, which had dominated the hardware market since the beginning of the Victorian era in 1860, were in short supply because metals were needed for airplanes and ammunition. "But there was still plenty of sand out there to make glass with," says [Brad] Kittel [president of the Antique Doorknob Collectors of America.] And by 1920, the largest hardware makers, including Yale & Towne Manufacturing Co. of Connecticut and Barrows Lock Co. of Illinois, were mass-producing doorknobs of molded and machine-cut glass, and cut crystal to suit various house styles, wallet sizes, and tastes.

During that era, most glass knobs were clear and featured six, eight, or 12 facets [the most common, 12-sided molded-glass knobs.] Their faces were flat so you could peer inside to see star, bullet, and pin-prick designs molded into their bases. Less common were colored-glass knobs in robin's egg and cobalt blues, emerald, amber, violet, white milk, and Vaseline glass (which got its yellow-green color from adding trace amounts of uranium to the mold.) Shapes also varied, from ovals with incised star patterns to crystal globes with tiny bubbles inside — a popular 1920s Art Deco style that works well with modern interiors today.,,1110478,00.html

An old hotel came crashing down to dust and rubbish, it's day done. Among the salvage someone saved my doorknobs. I'm still on the road, and I found them saved. I'll save them, and someday I'll build me a house upon a hill. These glass doorknobs will find a new home. Someone else someday, when my home is not my home, someone else will reach out to turn or not turn. Not turn again.
Desiring this man's gift and that man's scope
I no longer strive to strive towards such things
(Why should the aged eagle stretch its wings?)
Why should I mourn
The vanished power of the usual reign?

Because I do not hope to know again
The infirm glory of the positive hour
Because I do not think
Because I know I shall not know
The one veritable transitory power
Because I cannot drink
There, where trees flower, and springs flow, for there is nothing again

Because I know that time is always time
And place is always and only place
And what is actual is actual only for one time
And only for one place
I rejoice that things are as they are and
I renounce the blessed face
And renounce the voice
Because I cannot hope to turn again
Consequently I rejoice, having to construct something
Upon which to rejoice

And pray to God to have mercy upon us
And pray that I may forget
These matters that with myself I too much discuss
Too much explain
Because I do not hope to turn again

Let these words answer
For what is done, not to be done again
May the judgement not be too heavy upon us

Because these wings are no longer wings to fly
But merely vans to beat the air
The air which is now thoroughly small and dry
Smaller and dryer than the will
Teach us to care and not to care
Teach us to sit still.

Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death
Pray for us now and at the hour of our death.
I.... I haven't found my home again. I'm still on the road. I still find lamps on the road to buy lamps; still find an empty home for fish; still find tarnished candle-holders fallen from the hands of the dead looking for candle-holders fallen from the hands of the dead brought to shine again. The light of candles will light the shine of the glass and the stars within twelve facets, common though they say it is. My house I will build me upon a hill. I reach out.
Although I do not hope to turn again
Although I do not hope
Although I do not hope to turn
T.S. Eliot, "Ash Wednesday"


covenant said...

I'll start checking the garage sales for you...

Or maybe we need to get back to building up the ammo supply!

Dag said...

One of the greatest weapons in our struggle against the world as it's moving these days is a sense of aesthetics. The beauty of the Marine Building in Vancouver, which Charles illustrates in a couple of his recent posts, reflects on all people, making Humanity beautiful. Though I'm not capable at all of creating anything of beauty myself, I partake in the general experience of beauty. I am beautiful because of it.

Well, maybe not so much to look at anymore.

Eowyn said...

"A home for fish without fish."

We homeless fish must live without water. How so?

We figure it out :)

Dag said...

I had some fun thinking about doorknobs turning and T.S. Eliot's poetry chock-a-block with Christian allusion and how I could combine the two in a post of my own. It was fun, if nothing else.