He feels guilty enough about writing poems
much less talking about it for a precarious living.
He sticks closer to carpentry; straightening boards,
hammer blows, cutting the corners of a stair so it
stands right and is safe for the climber, the old and
babies just walking. Being sure the rafters carry
a roof that sheds rain and whatever snow load
settles in. Fitting oak boards to make the floor,
no gaps or creaks, the nails angled and set
in the tongue each with one massive blow
of the hard rubber rented mallet. Doors swing
quietly, and latch with a soft, hollow chirp. At end
of day he buckets his hand tools, unplugs power,
picks up a bit and sweeps and heads for home.
He inhales the smell, the silence of new work,
the day's final chirp of a solid core door latching.
Art credit: "Exposed rafters with grooved siding ceiling," photograph on the website of builder C. E. Cotton.