axeman: a way to the (wooden) heart

he studies the gnarl

a mongrelled
branch base
with no level surface
to sit on his block
or to face
the splitter

he has
a forty-five degree swing
at best

for a broken leg
if he only manages to strike
a glance

the easy thing

the smart thing

would be to discard it

there’s little usable wood

obtainable heat

little point
given the mountain of rounds
that remains
to be cut

but …

what is chopping wood
if it is only slicing

what is chopping wood
if you can’t
test yourself
a little

an element
of battle


he looks at his pile
of rounds
selects a fresh one
to serve
as block

sets the mongrel piece
with one angle
between his chosen block
and another round

kissing the dirt

the other angle
still jaunty
is set firm on the block

the striking surface though
has become horizontal

he can study the piece
to see if there’s a way
to break its heart

© Frank Prem, 2017

September 2017 Poem #33: po-dro – transcribing now



6 thoughts on “axeman: a way to the (wooden) heart

  1. Pingback: Author Interview – G. W. Renshaw – “The Chandler Affairs Series” (Crime/Mystery/Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Thriller) and “Odd Thoughts” (Speculative Fiction) | toofulltowrite (I've started so I'll finish)

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