Sunday, November 7, 2010

Poetry Bus gets a Soaking (For Monday November 8th)

Jessica Maybury of A Perfect Fourth has given us the challenge for Monday, November 8. She says:

"Years ago my friend S bought me a book to read in the bath. It was waterproof and contained stories or poems about bathing or water or swimming pools etc etc. So that's my challenge; allow me now to compile a collection of poetry about bathing. Or the sea. Or swimming pools. Or the layout of your bathroom. I want senses and unwound feelings inside."

So there it is. I'm on the bus early. Within moments of reading Jessica's request I recalled an interesting bathing experience from my childhood:

Summer Bath

In the coolness of the basement
utilitarian in it's time -
next to the coal bin scattered
with crunchy black crumbs -
near the washing machine
with the wringer I
had learned the hard way
not to put my fingers in -
around the corner
from the summer stove
that kept heat out of the kitchen -
just feet below laughing young parents
slapping euchre cards against an
oilcloth table cover -
sat cousin Grace and I
ages three
maybe four
soaking like last week's linens
up to our necks in
tepid water
on either side of the double laundry tub
comparing raisiny fingertips
testing the gritty texture of the Fels Naptha bar
and discussing just what might happen
if we poured some bluing in the water

Cynthia Ann Conciatu

For more Poetry Bus Bathing go HERE!


Peter Goulding said...

Oh how brilliant! The scene set wonderfully well (reminds me of my aunt's house in Switzerland) and then the final joyous picture.

Kat Mortensen said...

Oh, I love the memory-picture that you paint here, Cynthia!
Funny though, I think my favourite line is the slap of the euchre card on the oilcloth table cover.
This was fantastic!


Dick said...

Sharp clarity and focus in this close-up on a fragment of experience. A poem of tiny, crystalised moments.

120 Socks said...

Great memory poem, I enjoyed reading it.

Titus said...

Really enjoyed, and liked, this.
The whole picture wonderful, loved
'soaking like last week's linens'
and ending with the bluing gives us character in a line and takes me straight to my own mother's blue bags. Fabulous read!

NanU said...

A wringer washer and eucher cards - could be my own grandparents' basement. Wonderful poem, full of memories!

The Bug said...

LOVE this! Reminds me of baths with my cousin when we were small. We thought we were the stuff. And I well remember the wrinkled fingers & toes...

Enchanted Oak said...

Wow. Sprung as if from the head of Zeus, a perfect childhood memory in an archaic time. The details are pure pleasure. I remember being benevolently ignored like this.