Many years ago, when I rented a shop for my motorcycles in Kingston, Ontario, one of the other tenants was a blacksmith/philosopher named Brian Hughes. His shop (Highland Forge) was a delight to visit, a dark comfortable place in a limestone basement with coal fires providing most of the light, filled with the fragrance of coal and steam. He never was too busy to stop and share his views on life and the world.
I tried- without much luck- to pick up some blacksmithing skills by osmosis and one day by way of explanation of the process, he made me this knot. As he pointed out, you can't just heat up a rod of steel and tie a knot, the material just doesn't move that easily, it all has to be pushed into place in stages with a hammer and multiple reheatings, a time consuming and deliberate process. To complete the piece he tapered and shaped the ends into the standard decorative little curlicues- in the time honoured way.
I still have it.
Time went by, I left town to go to school, he moved his shop to Westport and we kind of lost touch over the years. I heard through the grapevine he had passed away (much too early) and it took awhile to find something about him on the net.
|The Anvil's Ring|