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A New Piece of Furniture

Story ID:6086
Written by:Monte Leon Manka (bio, contact, other stories)
Organization:retired
Story type:Poem
Location:Hemet CA USA
Year:1930
Person:Proud Chelsea Kansas Kid
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A New Piece of Furniture

A man came to our farmhouse
With something to hang on the wall
Laid it on the table
Funny looking thing, made no sense at all

He drilled holes in our plaster
Hung there a box like thing
It had a walnut looking cabinet
Mouth and ear piece and made a funny ring.

Below the mouth piece
That projected from the face
A space to write notes
A slanted place

On the box
Near the top was a crank
To get Sarah at the switchboard
When you gave it a yank.

To get Sarah at the switchboard
Sometimes seemed an impossibility
Fifteen farmers on the line
Limited your accessibility.

But when the line opened for me
I’d tell Sarah I’d like to speak to Bill
She’d ring the Brants number
Across the River and on the hill.

Our Rural Number
For the Wayne Manka Family
Was easy to remember
2-F-3

When you got bored
You could listen in
On some ones else’s conversation
It wasn’t a mortal sin.

If you had an emergency
You could ask the “party” to give the line to you
So you could have Sarah call the Doctor or Sheriff
The “party” waited patiently until you were through

That old Box is now a piece of History
An antique
But when placed on our wall
The thing was so unique

It opened up a line for conversation
We could visit with our relatives in another state
Even though their voices were weak and scratchy
Man O Man this was something great.

Today I carry my phone in my pocket
A little bitty thing
A piece of metal and plastic
And has a funny ring.
Monte L. Manka 06-17-10