LA: Why hammers, and not some other tool or device?
DT: “Hammers are the Domestic Tools” is from a collection I am currently working on that involves hand tools.
However, I specifically chose hammers as the domestic tools because they are useful, in equal capacity, for creation and destruction. Most tools share this capacity. You could stab a wall apart with a screwdriver if you had the inclination, but, for the majority, and though it often takes great strength to utilize, the screwdriver is a finesse tool. It is better for easing and coaxing. Drills are the same as screwdrivers in this way. They are precision tools.
Hammers, however, are violent. They involve blunt force. This is not to say that I believe blunt force, physical or mental, should be a part of domesticity. However, the hammer was one of the first tools developed, (and I am thinking rock in hand, here), because the hammer is simply an extension and hardening of the fist and the arm. We developed the hammer because it is the tool that most closely replicates are natural capacities. We have appendages. We can create. We can destroy.
The purpose of our lives depends on where and how we focus this potential energy. We can build, or we can bring to the ground, greatness, and as the story is concerned, it seems to me that any relationship’s well-being is reliant on the constant application of creative forces against complacency, apathy, boredom, and anger. It is easy to be taken over by these forces as demolition can be much easier to accomplish than creation and preservation. It is harder to build a house than to set it on fire. This, of course, brings up questions of controlled demolition, or premeditated deconstruction. This happens when people try to escape the world they have built around them. The world might have become foreign to them, or they may not like the way the world has been made. Perhaps it is not of their own design. Whatever the causes, there have been many attempts to implode these worlds without kicking up much dust.
In my small experience, achieving a demolition without getting dirty is impossible. People have a hammer. They swing it until somebody’s world shatters. They have not learned to use the hammer effectively, because they do not understand the hammer’s potential. They will end up with sore thumbs. This hammer can be used to build up your partner, your own psychological health, your bank account, your creativity, your morals, your will, the quantity and quality of your equity and/or children. Whatever you believe in, you have to create the world in which it can exist.
It takes practice to wield the hammer effectively. It takes patience to not swing it blindly. You have to learn to build the frames that support your life. This is why we learn to use the hammer first, and save the precision tools for later. In this way, the hammer is a complex tool that is too often dismissed as simplistic. The hammer is used for the hardest work. You need the hammer to tear down what you have constructed poorly, or in bad judgement. You need the hammer so that you can start over. You need the hammer so that you can begin again, again.