"Since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be?"

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Steel and Sawdust

This is a poem I wrote for the Idiom, Gordon's poetry and photography journal. The theme was: The City, so I just let my mind wander to when I recently walked the streets of New York. I'm not going to say any more about it although I've been told that the poem's meaning is rather confusing; but to me, it says exactly what it needs to say.

Steel and Sawdust

On our way to Central Park,
we passed a skyscraper
under construction,
steel beams poking
intothe atmosphere, like a
tower of Babel.
Buildings are your favorite subject.
You could talk on modern
engineering from 59th
to 95th and not grow weary
of describing angles, spires,
complex structures.
You told me they’re rebuilding
the World Trade Center—
creating a memorial.
New steel will rise from older ashes,
I thought of how my father’s father
made our house
from wood and blood  and nail.
How my mother carved
each year on bedroom doors.
The smell of sawdust still
reminding me of goat’s milk and
Father’s sturdy hands.
But you talked
too quickly
too volubly
like buzzing in a 9 to 5
bee hive— turning out a product.
I don’t really mind. The scent of
sawdust is meant
to be savored.

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