My daddy taught me a trick that his daddy taught to him,
You rub a nail on your beard when it won’t go in.
The wisdom of my people seems to move in my mind.
The tall sons of Becklah, carpenters all, stand here with me, pounding in time.
I am a product of generations. These hands are my own, but they swing this hammer like the flesh and bone of my father, grandfather and the fathers before him.
In New York and Ohio, Virginia and here, the nails ring out today with the same rhythm.
January 19, 1995