In the shop On the Hill

By Kathryn J. Foster

Now my Dad was the son of a blacksmith,
Thirteen kids and the youngest was he,
And in the shop on the hill of our homestead,
There he learned what it was to feel free.

Dad became a blacksmith and a farmer,
And his hand 'oft turned to carpentry,
And in the shop on the hill of our homestead,
There I learned what it was to feel free.

With the wood shavings piled all around me,
While the saw whined its lonely lament,
I knew the sweat on the brow of my father,
Framed the face of a man quite content.

A draft from the bellows stirred the fire,
As the smoke curled its way to the door,
And the ringing of the hammer on the anvil,
Never let his kids know we were poor.

Though my Dad took no orders from mortals,
His knee bowed to management above.
Took no overtime or yearly vacations,
But paid dues to the "Union of Love".

Yes my Dad was the old kind of father,
Planting seeds, cutting down many a tree,
And in the shop on the hill of our homestead,
There we learned what it was to feel free.

(written as a song)
Published in 1996 in "Island Journeys" by the Poetry Institute of Canada.
Also in The Woodstock Bugle