The Stone Mason

By heart he knows the geometry
line of garden wall
arc of fireplace opening
truncated cone of planter

He gathers his raw material
from the edges of plowed fields
whre farmers have piled
their unwanted fieldstone

He chooses each one for shape
pillows, loaves, footballs, hockey pucks
for grain and color
mottled marble, fools gold

His tools are the hammer, the chisel
the trowel      his fingertips
dried and skinless      unprotected
by finger-worn gloves

He is Michelangelo in reverse
choosing, chiseling
setting precise shapes in mortar
erecting sculptures of stone

I would gladly design his flag:
hammer, chisel, trowel, heart
on a field of red for strength
letters across the top, FATHER
           R. T. Sedgwick

Listen to: The Stone Mason 

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