Conditions were harsh out in Kansas,
For the children and Sarah and Paul.
Neighbors and friends packed up and were gone;
Headed west they could hear fortune's call.
Never sure year to year of the harvest,
So their talents were traded and sold.
Sarah a seamstress, Paul made his knives,
And they spent them like silver and gold.
Fourteen years worth of lessons in Kansas.
God had always provided their needs.
They trusted in him for direction,
And would willingly go where He leads.
They wanted the best for their children,
Where nature's a little more tame.
Destiney's hand reached out once again.
Opportunity shouted their name.
The Pacific Northwest urged them onward.
Where there's timber and culture and schools.
A talented blacksmith would thrive there.
Sarah had visions of fashions and spools.
They drifted through dreams for their children;
Better teachers and schools, books stacked high,
And a chance to pursue their own future.
Spreading their wings and learning to fly.
To strive and succeed is a blessing.
Fanning flames of creativity.
Possibility coupled with freedom.
Oh, this beautiful land of the free.
For all that have dreams to enlighten,
Where they'll find their true calling and grow.
Expanding on gifts God has given,
And nothing to stifle the flow.
They sold what they could, packed up the rest,
And were headed out west on the train.
America opened her heart once again,
With her treasures and spirit to gain.
Not sure of the place they would settle.
God would show them the way, this they knew.
Seattle, Tacoma, Portland or where?
Each mile they traveled, hopes and dreams grew.
Mother nature poured out warmth and beauty,
And Oregon welcomed them home.
Overwhelmed with her glory and splendor.
No need to go further or roam.
Bought a place by the city of Portland.
Opportunity seemed to be there.
Some land, a few buildings, a cabin.
God had led them and answered their prayer.
Sarah enrolled the children in school.
They cleaned up the cabin and land.
Traded dresses and knives for things they would need.
And set about doing all they had planned.
Paul hung a big sign outside his shop.
"BLACKSMITH FOR HIRE, KNIVES CUSTOM MADE."
Didn't take long for his skill to known.
Inventor, an artist, they called him, "The Blade."
The loggers and miners would bring broken parts,
And request special tools to be made.
Paul met every challenge with passion and skill,
And a spirit that never would fade.
Each job had a lesson and Paul wrote them down.
And would think about ways to improve,
Hardening, friction, balance and wear,
Then built them to see what a field test would prove.
Neighbors and friends had repairs to be made,
On implements, wagon parts, hinges and tools.
Matthew, Paul's son, would work after school,
And learned that a blacksmith was no trade for fools.
But the fire and anvil, hammer and steel,
Brought a joy he would not be denied.
He made the repairs like a smith twice his age,
While observing his father who worked by his side.
They had to expand to meet the demand.
And they hired a couple more men.
Paul kept creating for customer's needs,
Hired some more and expanded again.
His blades weren't forgotten but set to the side,
Too busy to give them much thought.
His creative talents had never been lost.
He followed the rainbow in search of the pot.
Sarah rented a shop in the city,
Called it the, "Huckleberry Boutique."
Designing clothing beyond the normal;
Made for the boldest and for the meek.
She hired a clerk and three seamstresses.
Was a favorite with women and girls.
Her daughters would wear her creations,
With drapes, pleats, ruffles, flowers and pearls.
Paul raised up the flag every morning.
And the years just went trickling by.
They were grateful for all God had given.
Read from the Bible and didn't know why,
They'd been blessed with so many fortunes.
Their home and family, business and friends.
The children were now off to college.
The circle of life and love never ends.
Mary had hopes of being a writer,
Of people and places, worlds not what they seem.
Martha had worked with her mother for years,
A fashion designer was her greatest dream.
Matthew had learned his father's trade well,
And he wanted to be an engineer.
Invent and design for the loggers and mines.
A fine family business, a noble career.
In time the children were settled in life.
Mary wrote stories and sold quite a few.
"Huckleberry Fashions," was thriving;
Martha now at the helm, the company grew.
And Matthew returned to his father.
Engineering degree, his dues had been paid.
He took over the business and loved it,
And freed up some time for his father, "The Blade."
Paul and Sarah had time on their hands.
And they knew what they wanted to do.
There were poor, unfortunate souls reaching out,
To the churches for shelter and food.
With compassion and love for their neighbors,
They would share God's sweet bounty with them.
And help them to reach their goals and their dreams,
While freeing themselves from poverty's hem.
There were businesses all around Portland,
That would also be happy to share.
The churches united, a great common cause.
There was guidance, training, housing and prayer.
A scholarship fund was created,
And watched over by Sarah and Paul.
Volunteers vowed allegiance and honor.
"SPREAD YOUR WINGS SUPPORT GROUP," stood very tall.
The Board of Directors and all those involved,
Gave their smiles, compassion and heart.
No one expected a salary or wage.
Brushstrokes creating a fine work of art.
A foundation with nothing to gain,
But the blessings that God has to give.
Helping others to reach for abundance.
Then passing it on so others may live.
Paul made his knives when he had some free time.
Gave them as gifts to family and friends.
Sarah designed just for fun now and then,
And followed the industries fashions and trends.
They were thankful for all of God's blessings,
Independence and dear Liberty.
Where all have a chance to make dreams come true.
Oh, this beautiful land of the free.
Copyright © Robert Nehls | Year Posted 2016