Today was like the stair day. It was a day of excitement and of familiarity. There are three 8 x 8 hand hewn posts for our house. All three went up today. The posts anchored us even more into this space. Once in place, everyone could see what I had envisioned the posts doing, defining the different functions of the space in the large great room. It was gratifying that people got it and more that I got it when I designed the space.
Originally the posts were to be structural, that is help hold up the house. Because of snow load issues we had to change the design of the ceilings and the room. Quite a lot of the ceiling detail changed but we decided to keep the posts. They are hand hewn 8 inch square posts. Although they had been here since Friday I had not seen them until this morning. They went up quickly, taking only a few hours. When they were on the floor they seemed too large. When they went up they were just right.
It is not that the posts are props but they are curiously important to our psyches. They have, as one person we knew called it, “heft.” Having heft in your life is important. Without it you could blow away. They are rough hewn with care. As human beings we are shaped like that. Human hands and hearts shape us bit by bit until we are true and even but we have those uneven places that show our history and our struggle to be in the world. They are perfect. The posts with their hand hewn irregularities remind us as humans that we can be straight and tall and have a wavy texture and still be strong.
The posts define the areas of the great room. There is a post right at the edge of the top of the stairs. When you walk into the front door your eye is drawn to that posts and the one shown in the front of the photo with the fan in it. That is the visual entry. The wall to the right is what we call our gallery wall. Things we find engsgin or beautiful will sit on that wall. Not evertyhing will stay for ever. Some things will stay a few days before passing and others will stay briefly and go back out into the world. It will be a wall of beauty that delights.
The middle post defines the end of the gallery and the beginning of the dining area. It squares off the open corner of the kitchen. Our kitchen is partly hidden from view and partially open. I was trying to strike a balance between helping guests feel welcomed in the kitchen but keep the dirty dishes from view in the dining room and living room. The posts help define the areas. The posts protect us as we do that delicate dance of what is private to us and what is pubic.
So the posts define the room as surely as they define our lives. After drifting from one place to another for the past year and a half, it is good to have three huge chunks of love to anchor our new home and we as we live in it.