Of riven oak







Oak grows and bends against its will
By wind it yields beyond its strength to resist
And so the crooked brace forms within the branch
I shape beneath my adze.








The stem lies cut beyond the axe head blow
Upon the woodland floor it rests still until
With wedge and driven sledge I split
The fibres into half and quartered sections








The froe club beats the iron froe along the grain
And the musty smell of new-cut oak fills my nostrils
As with each blow-riven cut the staves fall freed
And so I find my spindled rods with which I make my chair.