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.