The Draughtsman

Seventeen years since your retirement
One for every foot of your occupation of my girlhood
Not to scale for at seventeen I discovered
You are as unassailable as the stool my three-foot self could
Never climb however steadily positioned against the drawing
Board with a drop so sheer for the plummet of your moods
Frequently rolled like pencils over blue-prints of right-angled
Doorways and vague outlines of windows, sketchy outlays
Of foundations of your being that insisted on revealing where
The septic tank should be as if we did not know where the sewage
Was located while numerous Storage Units were strewn
Arbitrarily across both floors of your semi-detached self.
Without clues for what should be kept in them though we later suspected.
And now your own foundations are beginning to sink
You are no longer to scale as you once were.
(less defiant two-story than abandoned bungalow)
I still tip-toe across the t-square of your mood negotiating
The pirate’s plank inevitably leading to a 90 degree turn
Onto which I mount. Sliding unsteadily as it narrows, shortens
While your tongue sharpens the lead of my feelings, paring them down
Until there is a storage unit of shavings to shore up with a wooden ruler
One rule for you, a different one for everyone else