image Poetry of Kent Foreman

Hammer Song 

by  Kent Foreman (late 1960s)

_____________________________________

huh   !   . . .  Huh!     . . . HUH!
What’s that you say, mister?
                HUH!

No, this here hammer don’t blister.
                HUH!

I been fightin’ this hammer forty-one years today.
                HUH!

This here game getting’ hard for an old man to play.
                HUH!

Now, when I was young it wasn’t much of a fight.
                HUH!

I swing this hammer all day and drink whiskey all night.
                HUH!

I got me a good woman. I raised a boy and a girl.
                HUH!

My boy’s name is Willi. My girl’s name is Pearl.
                HUH!

I got a seven room house and an ’86 Ford.
                HUH!

And I fought this damned hammer for every damned board!
                HUH!

My gal married her dentist. I sent my boy away to school
                HUH!

All that book learning and he’s still a damned fool.
                HUH!

I can’t drive steel  like I used to. I’m a shade past my peak.
                HUH!

This old hammer gets stronger and I’m getting weak.
                HUH!

It ain’t been a bad swap, though, to tell you the truth.
                HUH!

It gave me the these things I spoke of and I gave it my youth.
                HUH!

Damn!   . . . Missed  that big spike. Getting so I can’t see.
                HUH!

There!    --Say what?  --No, can’t say that I have.  John Henry?

Who’s he? ? ?

HUH!

Huh

Huh.  .  .  .