Teeth gone awry
Surgeon and suture
And grown men don't cry
The calendar carve-out
From work I abstain
The plus side of painful
I got on the train
The first one, an ancient remnant of a molar, came out with ease. The next, a beloved canine, took a violent exorcism. "Bite on the gauze for two hours," was the followed instructions. Then, once the grizzly abosorber was removed, I went to see Trump; President Donald J. Trump, that is.
Funny how little unexpected detours get us places. I had no idea of the President's precise visitation to the Steel Mill in Granite City when the dental appointment was made. Aside from the tooth trauma I surely would have worked that day and as a consequence missed much.
The process: first I had to request admittance (RSVP) via e-mail. Once approved I showed up in the nearby parking lot. My name was checked twice before boarding a sizable bus (the Coach variety; very nice) for the 1/4 mile ride to the drop-off point. From there it was the metal detector and then a short walk to the Rally venue. A converted storage area, it now housed two sets of bleachers, some folding chairs, the slightly raised dais, and opposite this the place for the myriad of professional president watchers. Due to my lateness (the gauze thing) I found an obscure place to stand and lean. It would be four hours.
The atmosphere: celebratory. Many of my fellow steelworkers had seen two or more years apart from this place. Many had, understandably, lost much materially. But, with the ongoing limbo status of the mostly idled and deteriorating steel mill, many had lost much in the soulish region as well: peace, pride, hope. And then, a non-politician, a savvy business man with big dreams and big promises was elected. His name was Donald Trump, and one of those promises he made was to the nation's steelworkers.
When the President finally arrived (he was a tad behind schedule) there was no sitting down (and for me, no sight). ALL stood and relished the lengthy remarks. Arguably, much of what he said was familiar, and even though the words were tailored for this particular audience, ours was a devoted ear to an important individual who exuded an actual "caring" for the likes of we. Understand, his caring was not the usual "I feel your pain" political rhetoric. No, his campaign promises had preceded real action, and his actions subsequently touched our individual lives, and now his feet (incredibly! But so like him) had purposely found their way to our humble front porch.
Along with the president's remarks, Ivanka shared some thoughts. Also, US Steel, management and non, sweetened the celebration with their testimonies. And then...it was over. There was a quick egress as the closing music faded and the buses filled. And, although I had a sore reminder of something lost earlier that day, I also had a fullness of heart from something gained.
Here's a perhaps last replay of a pro-Trump song written and sung by a then laid off steelworker. Perhaps a version of "Keep America Great" will be added to the many currently under construction.