this coming weekend


marketa asks about the meaning of labor day   

why it's a holiday   i begin to explain   and realize   i don't know


it's just a holiday when everyone gets caught in traffic

it's the unofficial beginning of fall   just as memorial day 


is the unofficial beginning of summer   wikipedia tells me 

something else   of its genesis as a way to honor the burgeoning 


labor movement in america and canada   and i think hmm   

it's come a long way downhill since then   as the labor movement   


as a unit   was effectively quashed by ronald regan when he fired 

the air traffic controllers en masse   who had walked out 


on strike for better   whatever   so i tell marketa it’s the unofficial 

beginning of fall   it’s just a holiday when everyone 


gets caught in traffic   and we're going to get caught in traffic 

on the way to and from the vineyard   isn't it grand    she's skeptical




generally speaking   it appears   that the labor force

goes fishing or boating on labor day   or goes to a ball game


roots    roots   roots   for the home team (be it the a's or the giants)

or perhaps gets away for a few days   as well will do


to see friends or family   or   more simply   kick back 

and relax   or even more simply   go to work just like any other day


especially if they're in retail   meanwhile   those who hire

the laborers and middle managers fly off distant climes


for a few days of much needed indulgence   and if i sound

a touch socialist   i can't help it   i always root for the underdog


(be it the a's or the giants)   but i'd rather be a me than a them   

knowing all the while it is a false dicotomy   there is no 


me or them   there is only us   colin's grandfather is an us    owner

manager    laborer   literally a toiler of the field   a true us  




it's friday evening   i have monday off   yippee    a three-day

weekend   and yes   we're going to the vineyard


and yes   we will get stuck in traffic   it will take forever

but that extra day to sleep-in is worth it   waking


to the sounds of a tractor in the field instead those horrible

crows in the alleyway behind our apartment   or the beepbeepbeep


of the garbage truck backing up   we will have fresh orange juice

on the patio after rising early to walk   watch the sunrise   


though that conflicts with the sleeping-in concept   then tomorrow night

we can go dancing if we choose   read and help colin on sunday   


go home on monday   i love the vineyard   our home away from home   

thank goodness for the vineyard   for colin and his grandfather   


for yenny   for marcy   whom is coming  on saturday   spending the night   

if she can get away   hip hip hooray for labor day




marketa says   and i do wish you could hear her accent   time to go   

time to put down the laptop   we're leaving this evening


i say   just a sec   give me eleven and a half more lines

and i'll be ready   which is likely to be true   as i'm an efficient


packer   and doer of small details   like wiping the counters and 

taking out the trash   making sure the lights are off 


and locking the windows   but before that   i pause and wonder

is there any reason for me to consider more deeply 


the meaning of this holiday   does it mean anything to me

beyond a three day weekend   did it mean anything to my parents   


my grandparents   what due should i proffer the labor movement

for those benefits that work proffers me   i pause and ponder   


and conclude it's too vast   who's to say what effect it had on history

and myself   but i give thanks nonetheless   then hit save and publish









Poetry by one trick pony The PoetBay support member heart!
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Written on 2019-08-31 at 02:08

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Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
Labor Day isn't what it used to be and labor unions aren't what they used to be, but I still like watching the iron workers march down the street with all of the metal things on their belts clanging.

So many things to like about this. I like how you "liveblogged" the composing of the 4th sonnet, commented on its composition in medias res. And I, too, root for the underdog. Which is quite often the Red Sox, despite a recent spate of World Series victories. I like the conflict between wanting to see the sunrise and wanting to sleep in. And I cherish "i do wish you could hear her accent."