Poem: A Choice of Tools


A Choice of Tools

Two rows of tools in the old workshop,
well worn with a rich patina
of a man’s hands working wood for generations,
each one for a specific purpose,
left on the shelves until needed.

You have spent a lifetime collecting tools.
Bits of knowledge. Snippets of craft.
random phrases from books and bibles,
never knowing when you might use them, or if.

A few are well worn, for such is your patchwork life,
that some things are common to all,
and there is constant maintenance to be done,
the work of living is never done,
and you find yourself whittling away,
finding, as you grow older,
you need less and less, that a few tools,
the most well worn,
are enough.

About this poem. 

Until I was fifty-ish, I thrived in the chaos of doing and having more. Since then, I learned the lesson I needed to learn. Less is more. Peace trumps activity. Relationships trump opinions.

The picture was taken in a woodworking shop at Hancock Shaker Village.


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