John Everett Millais – Christ in the House of His Parents (`The Carpenter’s Shop’)
I want to be a carpenter,
I want to work all day long in clean wood,
Shaving it into little slivers
Which screw up into curls behind my plane;
Pounding square, black nails into white boards,
With the claws of my hammer glistening
Like the toungue of a snake.
I want to shingle a house,
sitting on the ridge-pole in a bright breeze.
I want to put the shingles on neatly,
Taking great care that each is directly between two others.
I want my hands to have the tang of wood:
Spruce, Cedar, Cypress.
[I might add sassafras to the list]
I want to draw a line on a board with a flat pencil,
And then saw along that line,
With the sweet-smelling sawdust piling up in a yellow heap at my feet.
That is the life!
it is much easier than to write this poem.