Sunday, February 12, 2017


Isaiah wrote of the potter, shaping, reshaping, starting over.

Sometimes it seems as though a different sort of craftsman is at work.

At re-enactment sites or fairs, one booth never seems to lack visitors--including me. The blacksmith's work is fascinating and familiar. Whether is is a scrap iron bar being made into a grass cutter or a bit of rod stock into a pot hook, the cycle is the same--heat, then hammer and bend.

It isn't precisely parallel to our lives. Sometimes the fire is trouble and sometimes what softens us is a coal-bed of love (hotter now than the wild flames we started with). Sometimes the hammer is a crisis, and sometimes the bending comes from day by day little changes.

I'm not what I was, nor remotely who I ought to be. Maybe if I loved more it would go faster. And probably go harder, too.


Sam L. said...

Have you seen "Forged In Fire" on History Channel (Tuesdays at 10P)?

Unknown said...

James, this is your mother on your sister's site. I wish you could have known your greatgrandfather John Campbell. He was a blacksmith and was known through a large area for his work in the smithy. When we would go to their house we often would run to the smithy first for it was so exciting. Sometimes he would let us work the bellows. I guess some of the other stuff was too dangerous for kids. I liked to watch when he was shoeing a horse. I should tell you some of the other things he let us do with him. And he always made sure we had one or two of the dogs when we decided to explore the small caves in the ares. Dogs make good snake killers and thus good company for curious kids.
Do you realize your mother will be 88 this week? I do not feel that old - of course I don't know how that age is supposed to feel. So far, just little periods of snow.
Pat Bellinger
By the way, the house is closer to my moving back in. The workers have done a good job rehabilitating it.