Monday, December 31, 2007
I am not entirely sure what this is called. It's simple beauty captivates me. I have looked at it closely over and over, amazed at the intricacies.
This is a flower - obviously, and it is carved, shaved or whittled from one piece of wood. I believe it was made some time in the 1970's, but am not entirely certain. It was made by a man named Zack Yeary. He lived in the hills of Eastern Kentucky and created some wonderful items from wood.
As luck would have it - in the not too distant past I stayed with a woman who worked with Zack many years ago. He gifted her a big basket of a variety of flowers carved from wood. With that basket she had a few extras, one of these little wooden treasures was generously offered to me, this is the flower you see above.
Last year I met Zack's son Lonnie - the same Lonnie who's funeral I attended a few weeks ago.
He was a wonderful craftsman, he made wood come to life in his hand turned bowls. Once again good fortune smiled up me and I was gifted one of his beautiful bowls last year.
I don't know if his talent came from his father, but it was evident in his creations that he had a true fondness for working with wood as did his father.
Zack and Lonnie Yeary, Kentucky
I never met Zack and Lonnie, I only knew for a short time, yet I feel lucky to have admired their works of art up close.
I don't know that Zack's descendants have much of his wood work. I know many of the chairs he made for a church in the hills were stolen, it's any one's guess where they are now or if they even still exist.
I wanted to post photos of the flower here as I am getting ready to send it on to Zack's family. It feels right to me that is where this treasure should be... enjoyed by his descendants.
Leaves of Grass
This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body - Walt Whitman