The fine dust upon old tools I have forgotten
as I clean the shop: my brace and bits, some
long-enough to chew through creosoted
railroad ties while scraping granite gravel. Mighty
hugs to my shoulder in long, youthful spurts
that warmed the birdshot bearings out-of-round
where there was no electricity to hang a gate
miles from the asphalt. It was my third.
I wore them out. I knew no other way.
I recognize the dead scent of time as mine
on the shelves, in wooden boxes no one makes
anymore, protecting stiff-leather headstalls
and rusty bits we’ll never use again. I must make
room for the cordless handyman, especially
since this old battery has begun to run down.