Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Old Portland Company Buildings

I was walking back from town the other day along the river when this view of one of the Portland Company complex buildings in the late afternoon light stopped me in my tracks. I'll miss the complex the way it looks right now, and I'll miss this walk - I've been doing it since I moved here.

I've been thinking long and hard about those buildings. There's has always been something really comforting about them, even when the ruckus of an early evening rock and roll jam session bumped it's way through the alleyways from somewhere out in the back, or when I was spooked by the echo of my own footsteps as I'd slink through those eerie deserted canyons after the crews had gone home for the night.

I think it might be the color of the brick - the warm reds and browns that remind me that there was a time when buildings looked like they were literally constructed from the ground up.  More importantly however, these building are like the tracks they helped lay down from Portland to Montreal. They're not just a photo or an account-of in a history book, they're those tracks I can still walk in places, the glimpse of an immigrant worker standing in one of the upper windows, the screech of metal working against metal, and a blast of heat from furnaces that forged time along from the Civil War. We've all got a story somewhere in those bricks.

The Old Portland Company Buildings • 8" X 8" acrylic framed to 12" X 12" • $200

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