Come, Let's say good-bye | Solidarity

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Come, Let's say good-bye

— Dan LaBotz

Come on, let’#8221;s stop and say good-bye,
Steve’#8221;s leaving on his trip, on the road again.

See him standing there
in his hunter’#8221;s vest,
the pocket’#8221;s bulging
with notebooks and pens,
a small magnifying glass,
and a miniature flashlight,
miscellaneous papers
held together
with clips and rubber bands,
a couple of old maps,
his cigarette papers and tobacco.
He’#8221;s holding a small bag
with a couple of peanut butter sandwiches
and a quart of milk,
under his arm,
held together with a bungee cord,
a couple of books, of course,
and the Convoy
and Workers’#8221; Power.

For years he’#8221;s wanted
to drive a truck again,
to sit up high
looking out over the road
out to the horizon,
heading for Sandusky,
or East Stroudsburg,
working again,
a freight driver
or a carhauler,
a Teamster,
a Teamster once again.
He’#8221;s looking forward
to the truck stop,
chatting with the waitress
and talking to the men
about the contract
and giving them a leaflet.

He’#8221;ll stop and see
the Janadias and the Wades,
stay a night with Frank and Ann,
and then drive on
to visit Bill Slater and Doug Allen.
He’#8221;s expecting trouble
from the bosses
and the union bureaucrats,
and he’#8221;s looking forward to it too.
He’#8221;s thinking “We’#8221;ll show them
a thing or two, by jiminy.”
You’#8221;ve got to keep an eye on Steve,
because, for better or worse
he’#8221;s afraid of nothing.

See him, walking up to the cab,
standing there on the step a moment,
with his big shoulders,
his hair blown about a little,
and that great smile.
Take a good look,
he’#8221;s off again, for the last time,
and we won’#8221;t see the likes of him again.
Bye, Steve, take care,
and have a good trip.

Dan La Botz was a friend and comrade of Steve Kindred, and a truck driver member of Teamsters for a Democratic Union.

thank you for this moving

Submitted by Johanna Brenner (not verified) on February 2, 2014 - 6:07pm.

thank you for this moving tribute. you have captured Steve so beautifully as a person and a comrade and his nostalgia for the vibrant days of our youthful organizing when our purpose and our seemed so clear.