Putting Away

Let’s start with a soft wrinkling balloon.

Put it in the toy box, with a gasp.

It could be used again.  So hard to separate

The needs of the future from the past.

 

Knock down Duplo bridges. Break up train tracks.

One by one, lay them in the crate.

Collapse tent towns flat. How your knees crackle.

Sigh. Bend. Eyes heavy as paper weights.

 

Muscles ache. Be so gentle.

Tea towels, skeletons of their former selves,

May tear like thin skin along a bone.

Stack them on the kitchen shelves.

 

Fold the washing, Let tiny socks,

Shaped like commas, form a pair.

Hide away the unworn lovers, ill-fitting brothers,

Wrap the dead sister in fine tissue, with care.

 

And you,  when you are done here,

Who will put you away, withered balloon,

In a drawer that no one opens, ironed flat,

In an institution’s neat and tidy, tiny room?

tidy up

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