Cooking, washing etc.

Cooking washing etc.

Darning tired by the old fire, mending, breaking amends,
Pinny on still, sparks burning acrid holes in the rag rug,
the pulley damp and warm with the weight of nappies.

Folding cooking washing crying cleaning mending sewing drying
(She aches to put pencil to opinions at the late kitchen table)

Words flare in the grate and float blackly up in smoke.
Whole yarns knitted up in woollen vests, needled and muffled tightly.
Poems stitched up in bodices muttering between clenched teeth,
Words carefully embroidered into the best white linen.
Sonnets soaking in the wash house, songs in socks at every heavy footfall,
Lines hung out to dry on a good drying day, the wind catching their breath.
Stanzas pummelled in grey water and put through the wringer.
Whole novels folded between sheets, ironed flat as a page.

Washing cooking folding drying cleaning mending sewing crying
(She composes a list of promises and plants stealthy seeds)

Sue Heggie


One Reply to “Cooking, washing etc.”

  1. Do you think your mother was actually unrequited and frustrated by a desire to be creative or is this viewed through your filter of what you think she wanted in her life . Sometimes I wonder if what we (children) wanted for our parents/ for our parents to be, is at variance with what they chose/accepted for themselves.

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