Question: Special Orders
Edward Hirsch: This is the title poem of my book Special Orders.
Give me back my father walking the halls
of Wertheimer Box and Paper Company
with sawdust clinging to his shoes.
Give me back his tape measure and his keys,
his drafting pencil and his order forms;
give me his daydreams on lined paper. I don’t understand this uncontrollable grief.
Whatever you had that never fit,
whatever else you needed, believe me, my father, who wanted your business,
would squat down at your side
and sketch you a container for it.
Recorded on February 4, 2010