Short Stories

The Seend Shearman

The Seend Shearman

Inspired by a hidden gem in Wiltshire

See there. Up, up a bit.  Right.  Over  th’ arch  of  chapel window. Tucked away. Keeping dry and sharp,  ready for use when shearing time.  My work. By my hand that used to shear the cloth, trimming the threads teased by the teasels. Cloth for your back, keeping you warm by day and night. Men and wumen and childun alike. Coats for the gentlemen, kirtles for the ladies, bonnets fro  the babies.

But now do I God’s work in a different way. A  steady hand and  a keen eye are good for trimming the gurt lengths of cloth,  till smooth as a baby’s cheek. And  now do I carve.  A strong hand and a sharp eye for carving serves me well.  Chisel and notch, tap and chip.  What I  have  wrought on arch and tomb, on  step and column,  lasts through eternity. If pride be a sin then I be sinful. Look  on my work.  When  your cloth be threads and tatters, my  stone will shine in  rain and sun.

There’s men what made the coins from land and sheep , now dwelling in mansions big. Them gurt  big houses, servants and all.  From the sweat of  my brow and muscle of my arm. Praise be to God, the Father, and the Son , the carpenter from Nazareth.  May the Lord look down on I, a humble mason.  Angels and faces, scissors and shears  carved into the way which leads to the  Path of Righteousness. High up near God. God’s work indeed for the Church and praise to the Father,  the Son and the Holy Ghost. And praise be to my  father and his before im. Long line of sheepmen we is . Men of the land.  Men of the cloth.  Now men of stone.

Here, William , my boy.  This hammer be yourn now.

Picture: A hidden gem in Wiltshire.  Picture of carving on The Church of the Holy Cross, Seend

© Dee la Vardera 2013