The Pulley - Poem by Sheena Blackhall
I sat at the open door, Pocahontas of the porch,
Wearing my broth-plucked feathers. My mother
Was hanging the washing over the pulley.
The rope snapped with a twang, the wooden spar
Cracked on her skull like a cricket bat on a ball
She lay in her washday pinnie, Woolworth’s best,
Cheap and flowery cotton, one slipper off,
Her eyes sealed tight together like a dead bird’s beak.
A grey wet sock slumped over the berry pan
That still boiled on,
Oblivious to this small domestic disaster
Time froze, or I froze it. Ma’s perm
Was corrugated iron wearing a red rose
Who’d pot the jam if she didn’t rise
Like Lazarus off the lino?
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