YOU WILL BE SEEING UNIQUE ACCOMPLISHMENT
Around the turn of the century, a man named Ed Leedskanlin fell in love with Agnes Scuffs, a 16-year-old girl, in their home country of Latvia. They soon got engaged, but on the day before they were to be married, she left him, citing their ten-year age difference as the prime reason. He then moved to the United States, where in 1920, he began building what is now known as the Coral Castle: a massive structure including two obelisks, a tower complete with furniture, and even a perfectly-balanced swinging gate entrance – all made entirely of limestone and constructed solely on his own. Rare pieces of photographic evidence suggest that the five-foot-tall, hundred-pound man used practical methods, such as simple machines, to build the structures, but others assert that he must have harnessed secret or perhaps even supernatural energies in order to do so. Though Ed published many writings claiming that he discovered the secrets of the universe, he never divulged exactly how the Coral Castle was built, and his so-called “Sweet Sixteen” never saw what her scorned lover constructed in her honor.
it finally occurs to him,
as he leans on the wall of his finished monument
to love, that the girl ten years his junior never asked for
an obelisk, that those heavy stones he moved had done nothing
to move her, and she shouldn’t be blamed for the ache
that settles now in his bones.
but he’ll go on like being lovelorn is his only sin,
charging tourists ten cents to roam the tomb
of his heart, take pictures of the crude limestone slab
he called “bed” and cut to the length of
her unfinished body. and they will call it beautiful:
his love alone enough to lift those hunks of earth
into meaning; some strange, ancient magic. Continue reading