The Tool Chest

How much space was it really taking up
at the back of the garage? Flipped open,
on the lid’s underside, a handsaw
and a brass-backed tenon saw held fast
by swivel pegs; two shallow box drawers 
with gimlets, awls, that yellow cylindrical tin
for the bricklaying plumb line, slid apart
to get at the bigger stuff, any old how
at the bottom: chisels, the brace and its bits,
that rod like a devil’s tail – the soldering iron.

Hand tools for absolute precision.
Nothing electrical. Grandad’s kit,
that had skipped my father, hardly needed
by me in the city, that top floor flat,
so I drove them to the auction place.
No more lugging around, making space.
Never sell your tools, he always said.
The chest though could have gone on working
as the box I sat on watching him at his vice
filing each single tooth on the saw.