Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Hiddenhurst in Sunset


House of Laughs

The illusion of sunset 
upends me, 
sends me 
reeling like 
a comet's tail uncertain 
of any truth but 
the sensation of a flight through time, 
my wild ride in the funhouse.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Resolute Hay Barn


When I last visited, 
regimental ventilators 
still stood watch 
over truant cats
and the putrid carcass of a pig,
and the hay mow dreamed 
of mooing cows 
though the floors were gone 
right down to the undercroft.
I wonder what the Winter's wrought.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Hay Barn


Like a Violin

Nothing so hollow 
as an empty hay barn
in a fallow field
Leaning like dry grass
Hunched against absent winds
the great ridge pole arching
in the tensile magnificence of wood
fibers stretched against decline
and the tortured harmonics
of its splintering
without song
on these Cartesian hills.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Factory Buzz

PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL:  I visited the foundry in Ansonia this week and followed the old canal that was dug in 1845 a mile-and-a-half to the Kinneytown Dam.  The canal used to run through the middle of town.  Most of it is intact, but only old-timers know its there.  Three of the men were at the foundry, but one was making a social call, and it is still idle.  

Upstream in Waterbury, however,  tube, "in the pipe," so to speak, continues to be processed, and there's still plenty to be photographed. Here, George guides a bundle of partially finished tube to a rack near the draw benches, while Alfred waits in the crane for the signal to lower the tube into the bin.  

In the background, just behind the big, gray scale, you can make out the metal stair-ladder that goes up on top of the extruder. The large hydraulic pumps that drive it can be reached from a catwalk there.  The whole shed was constructed quickly in the build up to World War I and has a sawtooth roof and mechanical iron louvres typical of the period.  The extruder (operations photographed earlier) dates from the 1940s and WWII.

Alfred's day is spent in the crane shuttling up and down the central bay.  Here he has assistance in unhooking the straps, but he needs no such help. In the other bays and in this bay on other shifts, the cranes are operated from below.

What draws my camera, however, is composing the incredible detail and intricacy.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Carbonation, Cha-cha-cha

PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL:  It might be a holy rite.  Like a thurible showering incense in ritual purification, each distributer cup showers sparks as Mike sets it aside so he can hoist the new billets from the furnace and set them down to cool.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Waltzing with the Runner Box

PHOTOGRAPHER'S JOURNAL:  Once the billets have been poured, the runner box must be removed to get at the billets.  It is a cumbersome task, attaching the crane to the runner box, lifting it while holding and working the controls for the crane in one hand, and holding the handle of the runner box and balancing its load and guiding it with the other.  Slowly Mike must back across the floor and set the runner box down to cool, out of his way as he goes back to remove the billets.

For an earlier shot of Mike scraping the runner box, click here: http://rothphotos.blogspot.com/2012/03/scraping-runner-box.html.