RADOMAN KANJEVAC - recommendate  

          Yusef Komunyakaa


    I have almost nailed my left thumb to the 2 x 4 brace that holds the deck
    together. This Saturday morning in June, I have sawed 2 x 6s, T-squared
    and leveled everything with three bubbles sealed in green glass, and now
    the sweat on my tongue tastes like what I am. I know I'm alone, using
    leverage to swing the long boards into place, but at times it seems as if
    there are two of us working side by side like old lovers guessing each other's
    moves. This hammer is the only thing I own of yours, and it makes me feel I have
    carpentered for years. Even the crooked nails are going in straight. The
    handsaw glides through grease. The toenailed stubs hold. The deck has
    risen up around me, and now it's strong enough to support my weight, to
    not sway with this old, silly, wrong-footed dance I'm about to throw my
    whole body into. Plumbed from sky to ground, this morning's work can take nearly any-
    thing! With so much uproar and punishment, footwork and euphoria, I'm
    almost happy this Saturday. I walk back inside and here you are. Plain and simple as the sunlight on the
    tools outside. Daddy, if you'd come back a week ago, or day before yester-
    day, I would have been ready to sit down and have a long talk with you.
    There were things I wanted to say. So many questions I wanted to ask, but
    now they've been answered with as much salt and truth as we can expect
    from the living.