Monday, July 18, 2005


I saw this poem on the Poetry Daily "poem from last year" archive, this morning. Thought it was very apropos . . .


Where I come from, men worked all day, then came home
and worked some more. Retirement just meant mornings
in the basement or garage. And more than one of my neighbors
dropped dead there, slumped by a whining band saw.

These men walk beside me into my workshop where someone
has already moved the chairs into a circle. They stand there
and smoke or look down at their callused hands. The naked
emotion embarrasses them, not to mention the girls' short
skirts or boys with earrings.

So they look at the window that won't close, eye the chair
with one uneven leg, the desk that needs refinishing. Boy, if
they could just get their hands on a hammer, a couple of shims,
and some sandpaper they'd fix everything in no time flat.

Ron Koertge


Collin said...


Hooray...another blogging poet. Thanks for your comment about my poem and linking me. I'll return the favor. I see we're fellow Lammy nominees as well. Of course, your name is no stranger to me. I've read some of your work, so I'm honored that mine moved you to comment.

All good things,

Patty said...

Thank you for posting this!

I've assembled a collection of workshop poems to use in class. This will be a great addition.

megs said...

thank you for this, for today. timing = perfect.

Glenn Ingersoll said...

A friend turned me onto Koertge ten years ago or so. Koertge also writes young adult novels, tho I've not read any of them.

Esther's Writing Works said...

wonderful poem, workshop or not. thanks, esther