My father passed away a few weeks ago and though it has of course been very much on my mind, I was uncertain about mentioning it in this space. That whole public/private thing. But…things change, or fall into place, and I know now exactly how it fits.

On a recent visit my aunt gave me a lovely carved wooden scoop made by my father many years ago. They used it to scoop  feed for their sheep over 20 years ago, and since they no longer have sheep, and we now have feed scooping needs of our own, she decided to pass it on. Not, of course, that the usefulness of the scoop was the main reason – sometimes things are more than things (oh so eloquently put!) and I’m sure my father’s sister knows this, just as my father did. And as I do. My father was a “maker of things”, a true craftsman, and it is this aspect of him that I find most accessible, or that resonates with me, for what I hope are fairly obvious reasons.

So now that this beautifully crafted scoop has come to us, it will be used daily. A piece of craftsmanship that, even without embellishment, somehow manages to elevate a basic chore. (This is what it’s all about, really, for craftspeople, whether we know it or not, or whether we think poetically on it or just get the job done. ) And I’m pretty sure Dad would be pleased.



Filed under making

3 responses to “Craftsman

  1. As a maker of more ethereal things, I have always been held those who make tangible things in very high esteem, especially those that are both beautiful and useful. That certainly applied to your father, in addition to the familial love I also always felt for him. So, yes, that’s a really nice scoop… and it’s nice to know it found its way home!

  2. Thank you, Catherine, for sharing this glimpse into the tender realities of your loss, and of “finding”. You’ve caused me to reflect on how “fingerprints” of a shared purpose or moment may well be the most significant legacies.

  3. Nancy Bird

    Your father’s craftmanship will live forever. I imagine now your deep pleasure when you see Little R echo good things which come so clearly from your father.

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