Terry Collett

Gold Star - 22,646 Points (13/12/1947 / LONDON)

Auntie And Hand Washing - Poem by Terry Collett

You made your way from the john
to the dining table
and Auntie said

have you washed your hands?
yes
you said

are you sure?
Auntie asked
looking at you

with her fixed stare
and the black mutt
under the table

gazed at you too
I washed them this morning
you said

let me see your hands
Auntie said
and so you held out your hands

and she turned them over and up
and held them looking at them
you're meant to wash them

after going to the toilet each time
she said
not just

when you get up
in the morning
she released your hands

and you looked at them
as if they were suddenly there
before you for the first time

so you had best wash them
Auntie said
before I dish up your dinner

and so you went back
to the wash room
and turned on the tap

and taking soap
between your hands
you washed and rinsed

and dried them
on the white towel
on the rail and went back

to the dining room
and showed your aunt
that's better

she said
now go sit down
and wait for your dinner

and the black mutt
put its chin on your lap
waiting in anticipation

for titbits from your plate
and Auntie called out
from the kitchen

remember to say your prayer
before meals
and you said ok

and muttered
thank you for what I'm about to eat
may there be few vegetables

and lots of meat
and the mutt's dribble
wet your thigh

its jaw lingering there
giving you
its dark eyed stare.


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Poem Submitted: Thursday, August 9, 2012



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