Bath times as a child were
a mixture of joy and fear,
Lulu remembers, rubbing
her neck dry after her bath,
holding her long hair out of
the way with her spare hand.
You must wash under the arms
and your neck and between
your legs, her mother said to
her as a child, leaning over her,
pouring hot water over her head,
feeling she was drowning, she
remembers, sitting on the edge
of the bathtub, almost seeing
her mother standing there with
her usual critique and that wet
hand slapping her legs or hand
if she missed an area of skin.
Lulu rubs under her arms, raises
her hand upward as if reaching
for the moon or stars. As she
leans forward to rub her feet,
pushing the towel between toes,
she recalls her putting her feet
into her mother’s lap as she dried
them with harsh rubs, pushed
the towel between toes roughly,
causing wittingly or unwittingly
the long after remembered pain.
Her mother, hard as granite,
with reddened hands and stern
stare, cursed in the bed of her final
days, glared at Lulu as she blanket
washed her mother in the last weeks
before death came for her and carried
her off with her foul words filling the air.
Lulu lays the towel over her lap, sitting
still she leans her elbows on her legs
and hides her face in her palms, wishing
her mother could have gone out not
with curses or swear words, but psalms.
by Terry Collett
November 1, 2006
Bath Times as a Child
February 24, 2013 02:28 PM UTCviews: 0 6 people recommend this comments: 12
Bath times as a child were
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