Poetry: The Old-Time Recycler

Poetry: The Old-Time Recycler

Sewing machine

She started sewing bloomers

With “Quaker Oats” across the seat.

She soon found, with some stitching,

Flour sacks made a good bedsheet.

When folks would discard clothing

That they thought beyond repair,

She’d say, “Turn the damn thing inside out.

It’ll never show the wear.”

Grandpa’s coat became son’s parka,

The hood all trimmed with fox,

Lined with Grandma’s satin housecoat

And cuffs from worn-out socks.

Every piece of fabric stirred her

To some new creative height.

She’d curse and coax that old machine

To sew halfway through the night.

Her sole reward was the pride she felt,

After hours on the stool,

When she watched her lovely works of art

Parade to Sunday school.

Even now that she is older,

She still cannot relax.

She sits by her beloved sewing machine,

Contemplating all those scraps.

When I finally go to Heaven,

I’m sure I’ll find her there,

Madly stitching clouds together

To repair the ozone layer.


Helen Waring


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