Friday, June 28

Blue Birds, Artillery and the Fuse With Which to Fire

Local blue bird perches on local cannon.

My Grandmother has cannon.

She made it out of an old tractor axle and a piece of heavy pipe, and then painted the whole thing black.

So really it is just an old axle with a pipe painted black.

But for all intents and purposes, it looks like a big black civil war cannon. People coming up the dirt road from the south have a view of artillery poised and waiting to take out their vehicle. It's a yard decoration and it has been there for years. She even 'shot' a chipmunk out of it once. The chipmunk, nibbling away at a stolen bird feeder sunflower seed, happened to be sitting at the base of the pipe when Grandma came outside for one thing or another. The chipmunk, being startled and having nowhere else to go, took off up the pipe and launched himself out the top, landing a few feet away in the grass. He was fine and ran for cover.

When I think about it, Grandma's farm (now my brother’s farm) is the perfect defensive position. High on a hill with great views in three directions and a cover of heavy forest to the fourth. At one time well stocked with the essentials, probably even some gun powder and fuse sufficient to launch a bowling ball out of the end instead of a chipmunk. So cannon really isn’t that much of an outlandish possession. Reminds me of one of my all-time favorite movies.

[Burt cuts off a piece of fuse for a bomb for Earl]
Earl Bassett: What kind of fuse is that?
Burt Gummer: Cannon fuse
Earl Bassett: What the hell do you use it for?
Burt Gummer: My cannon!

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