Saturday, June 21, 2008

Wall's End

Wall’s End
Built circa 1985, photographed 2004

Twenty years ago now, more, I rebuilt a stretch of stone wall that ends here. Sections of the wall had fallen, and those still standing had settled, slumped, wound this way and that, so I tried to blend in my new work in a way that went with the flow–And would hopefully, one day, become indistinguishable from the old. Hence, a new name, one that stuck: Weaving Wall.

The wall’s end widens to accommodate the two concrete silo staves that form the seat. I’d intended to build a six-pack cooler into the wall behind the seat, near the top, but access became a prohibitive issue; solutions that seemed aesthetically pleasing also seemed likely to create drainage problems that would compromise the mortared stonework there. So I filled in the space with rubble and mud, capped it permanently. A few empties did find their way into the wall elsewhere, though.

There’s no footing below the mortared area, but the mortared joints haven’t opened up much. I remember thinking that the wall’s new end would move around some, but maybe if I built it solidly enough it could ride the frost-and-thaw cycles as a unit. Probably a naïve approach at best, but twenty years on, the wall’s end and seat are both holding up well.

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