The water tower on the Catawba
all that’s left of the old plant.
Tall brick walls & polished maple floors
housed bonds of chemistry, kin, & community.
Methodical hands guided by educated minds
designed systems that dissolved their knowledge
into a viscous cellulose solution.
Nimble hands once played the white filament
making silent songs moving bobbins,
have shifted to other instruments.
Heavy, etched hands
once measured their contribution
with careful attention to detail
Committed, caring hands responsible
for motivating people and process,
manufactured meaningful relationships
reinforced with collective respect.
Those there during its peak,
thankful for their good fortune,
speak of the golden age of
the modern fibers plant.
Here, by the river, the cycle continues
a sure foundation and a new community emerges.