The person who wired your office
might not know Chaucer from Bukowski,
but he knows poetry just the same.
No verse wrangler trapped in some lonely notebook
ever conjured the ordered beauty
of a perfectly built pipe rack,
or the striking logic of a relay cabinet.
A sparkie bends conduit like
E.E. Cummings reamed semi colons.
He pulls cable as if he were
Henry Miller strumming French lingerie.
There’s harsh beauty in his work.
The poets and the sparkies – their hands are same energy.
They build things
equal parts use and mystery.
They both say,
“It’s harder and easier than you think,
and you always know when you fuck up.”
The medium might kill them
and they know what to do
when the lights are broken.
© Michael Gravel