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Poetry is just the evidence of life. If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash. Leonard Cohen

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Bootmaker

photo courtesy of Rob Hanson
Who will fill his shoes when he is gone?
His dye stained hands are leathery as the hide
The hammering fills the hours from dusk til dawn
He has no one with whom to share his pride.

His daughter left his home in rage and tears
He never even knew that she was wed
Never met his grandson of three years
She tells the kid his grandfather is dead.

The older sons both went to fancy schools
Now they shun the work he does by hand
They have no use for all his simple tools
He does his best to try to understand.

His youngest son is practically a ghost
He's heard some folks refer to him as trash
But he's the one who favors her the most
So when he asks, he always gives him cash.

Who will fill his shoes when he is gone?
Who will tan the leather, cut the size?
The bootmaker keeps working on and on
No one to replace him when he dies.

17 comments:

Brian Miller said...

a sad place to be...though makes me wonder why they all turned their backs on him....

Jinksy said...

Another dying art? :)

dustus said...

Your second stanza really hits home and lends added weight to the ending, as well as the repetition of the filling of shoes. A very creative angle on the prompt.

wurdz said...

great piece of writing!i can see the hectic life of a man that put his heart and soul into a craft that slowly stole his life.

Fireblossom said...

I expect there a lot of such people out there, Eleanor Rigby. It's sad.

Christine said...

Passing on traditions needs to be natural, forced and they are doomed to die. This tale has no happy ending, sad :(, but well said.

hedgewitch said...

Sad, lm, but a very human and real portrayal.

Bryan M. White said...

I've known people like that. I like the whole play on boot-making/filling shoes.

Madeleine Begun Kane said...

Such a lovely job describing an all too common problem.

Patricia said...

oh my, what a tale you tell. You had me all the way through.

darev2005 said...

Aside from liking the poem, I wish there were still bootmakers around. And clock repair men. Can't get a decent pair of boots or get a clock fixed in this place to save your soul...

Mama Zen said...

"But he's the one who favors her the most"

That particular line really gripped my heart.

jabblog said...

Very sad. Such skill and no-one to pass it on to.

Laurie Kolp said...

A sad one indeed...

Claudia said...

oh my...what a sad picture you paint..i feel sorry for him but wonder why they all left..

Margaret said...

They took his money... Yes, very sad.

gautami tripathy said...

This hits hard..

clogs and wheels