The First Union Carpenter I Ever Met

Rebar skeleton
sinews more like high-tension 
  cord: tiny, steel strands
flowing together into a juggernaut of 
  leanest strength
Hard hat spun
like backwards ballcap
young rebels maintain the
heart
Whiskey-soaked Copenhagen
   fat dips that would
give pharaohs 
  the Spins
Daytime, hung-over, weekday
 clever builder
ingenious tricks make his
trade magic
Nighttime, weekday, side work, I'm invited
He pounds beer and
I with him
He's had more practice
  We're both crazy
 and we drunkenly 
         relate

He tells me about cocaine paranoia--
hiding rubber bands choked
with cash and eightballs in the walls
       I imagine his mind deafened with the ringing 
    of those cocaine chimes
       and the slumping jungle bass
        of his heart eradicating the
location of the caches from his mind
See, he'd become maybe too good at cutting out sheetrock,
 mudding, taping, and matching the texture.

About Jeff Opfer

Jeff is a carpenter and freelance writer born and raised in the Reno area. View all posts by Jeff Opfer

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