Since my dad just posted about a poem of his that got published a little while back, I figured I’d make a slightly delayed post about one of my poems published this spring too. This poem has not only been published in South 85 (click here for proof), it’s going to be published in dad and I’s up and coming chapbook, Mapping the Valley. More about that and a recording of this poem coming soon!


by Micah James Bauman

Some of the patients had a few screws loose,
which is not to say they were broken forever.
They only required the right tools to put them back together.

A kind man came into the room each day for group therapy.
He taught us how to use tools in the real world.
He had a brilliant analogy for teaching us the tools:

“Think of a nail sticking out from a piece of wood.
If you tried to use a wrench to pound in the nail
that may not be the best choice. On the other hand,

a hammer’s claw, now that would serve you well.
What kind of tools,” he asked, “do we have
at our disposal?” The man in the cowboy hat,

the one who when asked about his goals for the day,
had answered that he wanted to watch football,
said he knew about tools. “I built a shed once.

We used a hammer to pound nails into the wood
and put her together. We had to use a screwdriver
to put on the hinges so the doors would swing.”

“Yeah, I got tools. Back home. Good tools, and I know
how to use ‘em. I can’t wait to get back and build
something new, something as  beautiful as that shed.”

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