This Door Been Closed So Long

by Noel Kalenian

My son, the rapt watchman,
watches sawdust fall onto his feet,

onto the boots
of this diminutive host
to an unfathomable fount of questions
about saws.

This small inquisitor
about planes

we work together
over lumber,
one laboring arm,
one emulating youth,
in the smell of cut pine,
the scent of wood sawed
and spilling its history,
pouring its past on the patio. He is
stomping through the pile
beneath new grown leaves,
below the shimmering tree
the spring bird sings
its coiled spring,
the redwing blackbird
its rusty hinge
opens the door
to a garage,

two mesmerized boys dancing in the sawdust
under our father’s laboring arm.

Two maniacal boys kicking dusty piles,
running out the door
I call him
by my brother’s name
peer at an ant hill on our knees,
feed grasshoppers to the ravenous army,
chase in the grass,
tackle my exuberant prey,
wrestle in laughter,
panting side by side
he says, daddy.

The redwing blackbird sings,
brother in the rusty hinge.