Washing Line Blues

Although it is a sunny day
the rotary drier is sad today
and drooping on her zimmer frame
when she should be spinning
in fresh zephyrs of spring.

When she’s all pegged out with pillows,
and fresh, clean towels that flap and billow,
dancing trousers, shirts and sheets,
with grass and daisies at her feet,
the washing line pulls a happy face.

Kim M. Russell, 2017

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My response to dVerse Poets Pub Poetics: Does your dog wear a raincoat?

Lillian asks why people put raincoats on dogs and why are we enamoured with Winnie the Pooh and Micky Mouse? Why do we talk about the tortoise and the hare as if they are somehow competing in a race?

She’s talking about anthropomorphism: the attribution of human traits, emotions, and intentions to nonhumans, making an animal or object behave and appear like they are human beings.” She has given us examples of poetry, including the children’s rhymes ‘Hey! diddle, diddle, the cat and the fiddle’ and ‘Three little kittens lost their mittens’, and ‘Water Snake’ by  Mary Oliver.

This Tuesday we are trying our hand at using anthropomorphism in a poem. Lillian wants us to have fun with it, or we can be more serious. We could write a poem for children or a beautiful nature poem; take on the voice of an animal character or write in the third person.

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47 thoughts on “Washing Line Blues

  1. dancing trousers and a wash line with a happy face 🙂
    I used to LOVE hanging out our clothes when we lived in Iowa. And yes, the breeze just gave life to the clothes and the line!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yet another look at anthropomorphism … and a clever one. It’s been years since I’ve hung clothes outside to dry, but the sweet scent of sunshine stays with me! Thanks for recalling it for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We were still using clothes lines & outside spinning dryer racks up through the 50’s. On summer days those clothes did soak up fresh air & sunshine–but if the dust clouds came in, sadness dirtied the clothes. We got our first TV in 1955, our first indoor dryer in 1958.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That was early – my parents didn’t rent a TV until the late sixties and we had to lug the washing to the launderette – mainly my job! There’s not really any space in our little cottage, which is over 150 years old and suffers from condensation and damp; and I love hanging out the washing on my rotary dryer!

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    1. I’m kind of fond of my rotary dryer! I see her every day through my window and spend time with her when I hang out the washing! I like to leave her with arms outstretched but my husband always folds her up!

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    1. I see her out of my window every day when I’m writing. I’d already written a poem last year from the perspective of a bicycle, so she was the obvious choice for me – my constant companion deserved a voice!

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