Thursday, April 24, 2014

Mason's line

If you’re laying blocks or bricks
in a straight-lined wall with mortar
there are a few quick mason’s tricks
to keep your blocks and bricks in order.

Rather than place blocks askew
you can line them up just fine
all you really have to do
is guide your bricks with mason’s line.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Vesica piscis arch

Two circles of the same size
overlap by their radius
forming a shape like your eyes
known as a vesica piscis.

Half of these almond-shaped things
creates a gothic motif
whose curved elegance brings
masonry stress some relief.

Less mass than a barrel vault
thinner walls support it
closer to a catenary, called
a “fishes bladder” distorted.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The biggest arch ever

St. Louis’ arch is quite airy
although it’s not masonary
at the top it’s kinda scary
but you needn’t be too wary
because it is a catenary.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Compassion for a rock

We take rocks for granted
unearthing them when planted
they get in the way of growing roots
and stop the plant’s precious shoots
but when we use rock for buildings
we don’t need to really kill things
like trees for wood or wool for rugs
before they're killed they get hugs
but rocks and stones on this planet
we just take them for granite.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The masonry of crystals

It’s more covalent,
less ionic
with rows prevalent
on atomic
scale of being and
such small seeing.

Less ambivalent
more ironic
when stacking meant
the sardonic
scale of bricks and
atoms’ tricks.

Saturday, April 19, 2014


Watch iron rust
and see wood rot
but brick you trust
that it will not.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Parge coat

To make masonry walls like alabaster
It takes some fussing and some doting
Using a trowel, and mortar or plaster
Squeeze and press that parge coating.