Family lore

This is not a telephone table
made in a school wood shop
in the 1960s for the in-laws.
It’s an artifact of family lore
that traveled in my mother’s
car trunk from Pueblo to Tempe
and later crossed the country
to Virginia with its mate
the end table, both unscarred.

This is a family legend
that outlived its maker,
becoming the object
of poetry and admiration,
a symbol of craftsmanship,
of family pride, of connections
never actually possible in life,
a member of an exclusive
collection of work, fruit
of the painstaking effort
of my father’s hands.


My father’s telephone table was the subject of a poem that received Honorable Mention in the 2020 Tempe Writes! contest and was published in the illustrated anthology, Measured Moments. This poem was inspired by dVerse.


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