Career Day, 2002

Alexander Eikenberg

A fireman I knew, the father of a friend
once brought to my school his Pulaski axe:
a heavy wedge blade in front
a slender adze arcing on the back.
As we sat cross-legged on the carpet
and stared up at his stained pants and thick coat
we questioned him.

Do you always bring the axe? Sometimes I do.
Can you cut through doors? Walls? If I have to.
Is it heavy? He considered the thing,
leaned against the teacher’s desk.

Yes, terribly so.

Alexander Eikenberg is a poet from Hampstead, Maryland, and a graduate student at Towson University. He is inspired by the things and people that fill his heart, and dreams of going to work in a college classroom. His poetry has been featured in RunestoneGrub Street, and Next Page Ink.