From Emma's Scrapbook: 1953

She had heard it happen,
heard the bone break
as it happened and did not
need to read the account.
Still she kept the clipping,
though God only knows why.
The strap snapped, the one
holding her son to the top
of the power pole.

Andy became a lineman,
climbing and wiring
after a hot summer
of scaling trees, trimming
the tops to let in light
so they could make a movie
starring Gary Cooper.
Andy was agile and fearless
like his father, and proud
of his job, of making more
than the boys who stayed
in town and worked,
safe at Western Auto
or Brown’s Boots and Shoes.

It snapped and he fell,
and she heard his fingers
scrape the cross arm
as he tried to hold onto
the 30 foot pole, heard him
curse all the way to the ground
hitting Bob McClain on the head
with his flailing arms, heard
him hit the ground and land on
his feet, bounce once and fall

again and break his wrist.
For years he woke in the night
with a shout, reliving
the moment he knew he was
going down, and she heard
that too, heard it
each and every time.

:: Naton Leslie, Emma Saves Her Life (2007)

No comments:

Post a Comment