Sunday, August 23, 2009

Simple Joys

The Clothes Line

The clothesline was a news forecast
to neighbors passing by.
There were no secrets you could keep
when clothes were hung to dry.
It also was a friendly link,
for neighbors always knew.
If company had stopped on by,
to spend a night or two.

For then you'd see the fancy sheets,
and towels on the line.
You'd see the company tablecloths,
with intricate design.

The line announced a baby's birth,
to folks who lived inside.
As brand new infant clothes were hung,
so carefully with pride.

The ages of the children could,
so readily be known.
By watching how the sizes changed,
You'd know how much they'd grown.

It also told when illness struck,
as extra sheets were hung.
Then nightclothes, and a bathrobe, too,
haphazardly were strung.

It said 'Gone on vacation now',
when lines hung limp and bare.
It told 'we're back' when full lines sagged,
with not an inch to spare.

New folks in town were scorned upon,
if wash was dingy gray.
As neighbors raised their brows and looked,
disgustedly away.

But clotheslines now are of the past,
for dryers make less work.
Now what goes on inside a home,
Is anybody's guess.

I really miss that way of life,
It was a friendly sign.
When neighbors knew each other best,
By what hung on the line.

By Marilyn Walker

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