fiction / life / poems / Uncategorized

The Laundress

The laundry woman

weaves heavy footed

down rows of tables

and stacks of plastic baskets

singing a silent litany

to the many colored clothes.

The washing machines

randomly buzzing

stopping, starting:

Whir! Spin!

That one on the end

momentarily pausing

hesitating under the weight

of sheets and such.

The smell of bleach clean exhilaration

permeates the laundry

the laundry lady

steps with her aching feet

in the laundry’s heavy heat.

Rows of dryers lined up

like a file of

rounded, metal soldiers

glass faced robots

in a sweltering toss battle

ignoring the cries of humanity.

A couple of little kids

sling their unattended moments

hiding in between tables

scratched, initialed slates,

watching the laundry woman

scrub stains with harmony

washing them away

in that strong, metal sink.

The Maytag Queen missing

the hurdy gurdy man

in floral fabric softener dreams

left with only the flies buzzing

the fine fabric scrubbing.

The seasons pass

but there is always

the laundry of others

needing to be cleansed

in the long hours

and the hum of automation

day upon day

carving out

her small, clean existence.



26 thoughts on “The Laundress

  1. Love the new setup of your site! The flower is gorgeous. If you could increase the size of the font and make it bold, it would be easier to read all the wonderful creative things that you do. Hope you don’t mind me suggesting this. You know how much I love your site!

    • The small is used to describe her hard work, low pay, and being a somewhat “invisible” member of the working class. Many folks like to turn their heads and ignore how hard people work just to make a meager living….

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