The Accumulation of Centuries of Winters

Shingled them in Elliot's Eddy, Bud
says, the water swirling in the chute,

and changed my mind as to running being a lark.

When the horse started across
the trestle I hollered and the bend 

fine as silk. It was a hard winter and there was very 

heavy ice. Please pass the chipped 
beef. You mean the shit on a shingle,

Catch says. Bud keeps on, we were crowded 

and crowding all day and pulling 
almost continuously and say didn't 

the water fly and I swung a boat on Licking Point 

without springing a leak and someone 
said I was the champion oakum 

spinner of Gravel Lick. Work of cutting gunwale 

logs done in the winter to haul 
on snow, some sixty to seventy feet. 

Drop dynamite into the water – get a chop sack 

full of suckers; might as well 
tried to stop old bull by grabbing 

by the tail. Naw, hardly classed as an old timer. 

Nine timber rafts ready 
for fall flood to be delivered 

to Pittsburgh. And the dreaded Grass Flat Shoals 

we would almost if not quite 
perish. Scaffolds on the river 

bank and a very good rubber raincoat for which, I says, 

I paid fifteen dollars. Thought 
it safe to hang on a gate, 

and a hog had it torn to ribbons. Counfound I never like hogs,

anyways ice went out
about the middle February. 

A winch was used to draw the grubs tight, a wedge 

to make solid and white 
oak bows over the lashpoles. 

Crick, with a large crew hewed out, hauled and rafted in. 

And all went catty-wompus.