INTRO
WHEN I WAS FIFTEEN
ALONG 693
THE ABORTION PALACE
GROWING UP, TWO AMERICAS
ANNIVERSARY 1984
TO BETTY, 1982
BEYOND NORTH MOUNTAIN
THE BRANDY LINE (ABOUT A FAVORITE GOAT)
CHICAGO AND NORTHWESTERN
DREAM OF CHARLES DE LANGLADE
YOU CALL ME FOLLY MILLS
THE ODYSSEY OF GLOOMY GUS
HILLS
IMPATIENS CAPENSIS
THE ADVANTAGE OF INTELLIGENCE
I DIDN'T KNOW YOU THEN
AFTER YOU LANGLADE
WAITING ON LARAMIE CREEK
THE LESSON
LITTLE RIVER
MEMORY
MUSIC AT THE JACKSON
THE HUMAN CONDITION IS NOT
OLD DOMINION
OLD MAN TO HIMSELF
OLD RIDER
CALLING OWLS
FROM THE TALE OF PETER MINK
MAKE REVOLUTION
MY SHIP
SNAPSHOT
TO OUR SONS, 1982
SPRING PEEPERS
TED
TREES OF NEW JERSEY
A TRUE DOCTOR
DEATH OF WILBUR
BY WINNEBAGO'S SHORE
©Poems of R.F.Mueller- Other Times, Other Thoughts

THE SCRAPER
R.F. Mueller


I found a quartzite scraper in my potato patch
Say it was lost in the timeless maze
By the owner of some brown hand
Who could not have imagined
The passing of all those groves.
Yet some southward facing glades still lie
Where the slanting October sun once struck
The white of deftly moving stone,
Here all confused and juxtaposed,
The scraper hand, the potato patch,
The deer that scorns the fences and the roads.


 

annotation

The rock chert (or flint), which is almost always associated with limestone, was common at my Wisconsin home, as it is also on our Virginia farm, since both occur on limestone bedrock. In Wisconsin it was much used by Native Americans to make arrowheads and other implements. However, unlike Wisconsin, Virginia lies in an area where mountain building has profoundly folded and fractured the rock, and especially so at our farm, which lies on the great Pulaski-Staunton fault. The result is that the chert on our Virginia farm is so weakened by tiny fractures as to make it useless for implements. Thus Natives, including those living on our chert-rich farm, were required to look for other materials. They apparently found these in the less profoundly fractured quartzite ( metamorphosed sandstone ) of the nearby Blue Ridge.