Back then, it was just men
                              doing what they had to do
                              and white faced cattle waiting

                                             – Neil Meli (“Pulling Pipe”)

You will never know how we were blessed
time and again as men—the haze, the dust
of progress on this shrinking planet clouds

clear view. Hands like hammers hard as nails,
we were heroes as white-faced cattle waited,
day after day, bellies deep in green. We slept

soundly dreaming of tomorrow’s victories
and if the gal down the road ever noticed
our existence. Always work and little time

to socialize, party lines and little privacy,
and we learned to grunt, lift the impossible up
together—and how to howl at a rising moon.

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