Elias and the Reformation

Elias Isbell, Eliab Isbell, Old Burial Ground Killingworth

In the Year of our Lord 1834

Elias Isbell willed to his Creator–

The Maker and Master of the Universe–

His soul like his old best shoes

After 86 years filled with farming,

Fighting the French

Beating time for the Revolution

With brother Eliab on the fife,

A wife, two children,

And a wife again

By way of a legal document

Now in Hartford as part of the 

Historical record of Connecticut.

Here is the Reformation

In a nutshell

In the Nutmeg State.

Not a birthright 

But an earned right

Plainly stated.

New paragraph:

My beloved wife shall have

All she brought into the marriage

And the house for as long as she lives.

My son gets the farm,

My daughter, the furnishings.

End of story.

But then, 

The next line:

“My body I resign to the earth.”

“Hoping,” he said, “for a blessed immortality.”

I have sought and found Elias’s place

Marked with a silent rock in Killingworth

Where boys working for the town

Mow around him and his kind summer after summer

Because you have to.

The stars are rooted here, 

And God knows it.

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