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M.L.Liebler - "Underneath My American Face"




"Gramps, through all the years of layoffs

And callbacks, you worked in

The factory laboring endless

From your first day in Detroit until you retired

From the Dodge Main line 33 years later.


Gramps, I sometimes wondered

What your life could possibly have been

With the exact same breakfast every day at 5:30 a.m.:

Two fried eggs, bacon, toast and coffe with condensed milk.


They say a man is

Measured by his soul.

I did know that yours was dark and blue,

But I never really understood much more

Of who you really were.


Gramps, who loved me more

Than any real father loves a son,

I see you now in an old black & white

Photograph standing next to 

The neighbor's brand new Desoto

And their new small new travel trailer. All the while I knew

You were only dedicated to one woman

Whom you loved for over 50 years.


Gramps, you were always

The one I admired-

You lived exactly what you believed: hard work,

A paycheck to keep life

Balanced and going,

And an occasional, small, treasured kiss.


You never needed much, Gramps, because you knew,

as I am learning now, it was never

About you. How silent

Your joy must have been alone

In your old battered Chysler

That you drove back and forth

To work at the plant-

Like your own life-

It was enough to get you from here to there,

With nothing at all waiting for you

At the end other than a life

Well lived and complete."


Rattle, edição impressa, nº36

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