An Artisan, a World on Fire

An Artisan IIIaHave you heard the expression, “going to hell in a handbasket”? Well, the man who makes those handbaskets is sad that they’re only used for this purpose. He thought they’d be requisitioned for carrying apples, thermoses of lemonade and sandwiches. It’s summer, and there is so much to love. But somewhere, an orphanage is reduced to rubble. Somewhere, a bullet flies until a body stops it. And what can we say of this basket maker, yearning for a society where citizens might only admire his craftsmanship? His attention to detail. The sturdy base. The willow spokes, woven and perfectly bent.

Matthew Olzmann is the author of Mezzanines (Alice James Books 2013). He is the 2015-16 Kenan Visiting Writer at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Photo credit: Stanley Sagov


3 Responses to “An Artisan, a World on Fire”

  1. Ellie Taylor says:

    So hopeful and eerie and sad. A++

  2. Patti Rose says:

    This is quietly heartbreaking. You are a true artist.

  3. billy gee says:

    Wow, great moves. I’m proud of you, keep up the great work. #vapenation #bromansalam

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