A Marcia Medici poem from A New World Dawning, the Love Love Love issue, 1985.
The Stay at Home
She polished the shelves
washed the pots and pans
kept the beds made, the milkman paid
fed the dogs, spayed the cat
whilst her face sagged & her body went fat.
She plugged in the iron
pushed ‘start’ on the drier
she wound up clocks and had no new frocks
instead, the kids had new shoes
whilst she sat alone and her husband boozed.
She nursed sick parents
put plasters on cuts
scrubbed the kitchen floor, painted the front door
pushed trollies round shops
for her kids & a husband who would not.
Her saturday job offered no escape
but different faces to obey;
dresses to admire, others’ clothes to desire;
they walked the shop floor
in fashions jealously abhored.
She slowly packed their bags and
waved the kids off to school
she kissed her husband goodbye & still could not cry;
she could shed no more tears
as the door shut behind her on wasted years.