One Tree Woodwork

Custom woodworking and art

Carving out a migration

Last weekend in an up all night carveathon I carved my interpretation of a goose in flight. Carved from western cedar which is relatively fun to carve and I used my new electric chainsaw. My last electric chainsaw I asked too much from and during a particularly engrossing and difficult carve the motor got so hot it melted the outer plastic casing and then bit the (wood) dust. I chose an electric with twice the horsepower this time and bought a two year store warranty just in case. I have a gas chainsaw as well but I like to work inside my shop and the fumes get really bad and the electric is so much quieter which allows me to listen to music during.

Back to the bird I wanted the classic flying south for winter look. The wings cocked back in that comfortable 45* angle with head outstretched in that “driving all night” purposeful look. The summer in this part of Texas is relentless it starts in April and usually doesn’t really end until October. As someone who works outside everyday I like the rest of the animals have become attuned to the seasons. All humans have encoded in their D.N.A that connection to weather and what it means to our survival. To our ancestors weather meant everything clueing them into if it was time to follow the migrating herd,plant the seeds,pick the crop,find new shelter,build a fire,find new water,move to the valley,move to the mountain all of these decisions were decided by the weather which was decided by what time of the year it was which was decided by the revolution of the earth. Anyway back to what I was saying I would like to think that the large amounts of time I spend outside suffering/enjoying the weather I have become more wild like and a little less civilized. While suffering through what seems to be a 6 month summer when those first real fronts start blowing through and the geese start making their way down south to warmer climates and you start to hear their distant honks getting louder as they approach… Well it’s spiritual for me. I suppose it awakens that urge in all of us that want to live closer to the earth and it comforts me that those wild creatures in the air in their feathered glory are still following the eternal drum beat.




β€œIt is good for man
To try all changes, progress and corruption, powers, peace and anguish,
not to go down the dinosaur’s way
Until all his capacities have been explored: and it is good for him
To know that his needs and nature are no more changed, in fact, in ten
thousand years than the beaks of eagles.”
Robinson Jeffers quote

P.s- sorry about the quality of pics they were taken tonight after kids went to bed,glass of port went down my belly and very little light. But I can hear the wind knocking the branches of my oak tree against my roof as a front is blowing in. Oh yea.


4 comments on “Carving out a migration

  1. Crystal Jackson
    October 7, 2012

    After a rare late night out for this old bird, it was a breath of fresh air to read your post. The evening began 20 degrees warmer than it ended, and the first hint of an actual fall is in the air. And you’re taking flight, moving from season to season.

    Unlike other parts of the country that start moving into hibernation mode this time of year, we in the more tropical climates feel a rebirth in October. A renewed interest in being outside, enjoying the blue skies and watching the birds migrate.

    If I had a tent, I’d set up shop in the backyard tonight. Grab James, the dogs, a bottle of wine and some candles and just listen. To the wind in the trees, the birds flying overhead and the chance for a cool, crisp life full of anything and everything.

    And still we rise.

  2. Trailer Park Cyclist
    October 15, 2012

    Dangit I loafed around about commenting and now you have posted again so now i have to go back (or forward?) and read the new post and then come back and comment on this one. It’s exhausting, really.

  3. Trailer Park Cyclist
    October 15, 2012

    OK I’m back. “One flew East and one flew west and one flew over the cuckoo’s nest” I don’t know what that’s from and I am too lazy to look it up. I just know that ken kesey used it for the epigram of his book.

    The first time I saw migrating geese i was drying-in the roof of a three story apartment house in Dallas. An impressive sight. Not the apartment house, it looked like the six thousand other apartment houses going up in dallas in 1980. I mean the geese. That art-piece is damn fine. Also, if I guess correctly, it is mounted in a very special place and moves me a little as i ponder it.

    Indeed, Tohner, a life outside, dressed like gunslingers, does change and shape a man and if i had it all to do over again, i would do it all over again.
    As the nights cool down and lengthen, that beautiful melancholy of the season takes hold and we get a chance once more to reflect on which way the wind blows and how we move with it. Thanks for a very thoughtful piece.


      October 16, 2012

      The comments that I receive on my site are few but what I lack in quantity I make up with in quality.
      Crystal- Buy a tent. My last tent was ruined but I intend to buy another. I think we would all be healthier people if we slept outside more often. Even if an air mattress is involved.
      Tj- Its all in the details. There is always a story beneath the story…Thanks
      As to which way the wind is blowing I’m still trying it figure that one out…

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This entry was posted on October 7, 2012 by in Carvings, Furniture, General woodworking and tagged , , , , , .


Saturday night vibes got me like....
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