Thursday, June 17, 2010



Ever tear out a floor under

a fixed 300 pound cast iron

claw-foot tub? Of course you

haven’t — what fool would?

I would —

and having to leave the subfloor

in place, so all attack was from the

side or tightly under the tub

pine splitting, wedge cracking

piece by mother loving piece

and bracing the tub when working

under the claws and careful not to

harm a thing or any pipes or any

hand-painted tiles, to work instead

like a beast at

being delicate

and slide insulation board and

a new floor all back into

place by quitting time or


Bob says this poem is just as much about carpentry as it is about poetry.

photo "two bobs" : Bob Arnold, Bob Hauptman on a building site circa 1985 © susan arnold