” Summer Beams and Beaming Life”
....and so while out walking one morning quite early,
i strolled out onto your summer beam as burly,
as one of three in place all spanning forth width of girth,
i now know something of the tales of your birth….
As you can see, if you read between the lines my mind is already starting to drift to thoughts of spring, summer and all those other things that follow. Ah yes, canoe trips and white water, camping in places of solitude where the only sound that comes calling over the water is the sound of webbed feet loons speaking my name. Maybe this is why I fall back so easily into ether areas of looney dreaming.
Well getting back on track here, I was thinking this morning of ‘summer beams’, yes those massive horizontal timbers used in timber frame construction that span the girts and plates. Summer beams span and tie the sill plates or girts all together and insure the continuing life of a barn. These massive timbers can be 12” x 12” x 30’ and longer or wider, depending on your need and use of, as to size of building. Some amazing imagery is set forth when viewing the inside of barns, camp houses and new timber frame homes where summer beams are used to tie into a king post.
The English Barn I presently have and use is set into the slanted side bank of an old blackberry patch. Sad to say the blackberry’s had to go, but we are slowly bringing them back to life in other areas of the farm. Technically speaking I guess you could say our English Barn, has now become a Bank Barn, since in doing this we picked up a 48’ x 29’ cellar and the entrance to the main part of the barn is now on the second floor. Four bay barn, going from what was once three floors to now four floors and I’m afraid its still not big enough. Oh by the way, don’t tell my wife you heard me say that.
When I set the sill plates down on the foundation we had to have (3) summer beams cut to span the 30’ width since we were picking up a cellar which had not been there before and these are supported by 12” x 14” post in the cellar at 14’ in height, (3) again. The main summer beam here is joined at a ‘very busy’ tie in with two other beams over the backside of the barn and I will write about this at another time.
When I walk out over the span of a space such as this, whether at the sill plates or the girts higher up, I know that I am alive and connected with my center of gravity as found on that summer beam. Let the summer sun arise on a frame of work where I am standing on the summer beam and I will greet the sunrise as I feel life being splayed forth in the surround of this where I am found. And so once again I give thanks!
”Happiness is being on the beam with life – to feel the pull of life.” —Agnes Martin
And yes I know that it is supposed to be winter time here in NH, but where is the snow? Ha! I’m not complaining though as I can still get my ATV out into the woods, which is where I’m going today.
You all have a very good day!!!
-- --frank, NH, http://rusticwoodart.tumblr.com/