|Great Grandma's Washer.(1965)
She insisted washing machine age would pass by.
"Can't be doin' wi' it an' dunna want te try owt new fangled,"
she gasped, leaning on her mangle,
surveying a tangled mess in her dolly tub.
She preferred cold bottomed certainty of pot sink,
lugubrious black rubber plug and ring,
underwear crisping in front of roaring range,
never dried on line outside,
"Men are all filthy swines!" she cried.
Couldn't see how Hotpoint could transform washing day,
bring a chug to churn ghastly visions of bloomers viewed
through soapy mists spin and swirl, twisting knicker elastic,
they come out revived to trip the light fantastic.
Finally succumbed to pressure from my mum
and in it came, pitched next to scourers, Vim, polished
donkey stone,she glumly floated into a brave new world.
What exactly was the point of all those endless wash days,
now she'd been left soft soaped, her cycle almost complete?
new fangled-new and different way of doing commonly used in Lancashire dialect.
mangle- a hand rotated system of rollers to extract water from wet washing.
dolly tub- a very large metal tub in which dirty washing was placed and manually churned with a
large wooden paddle.
Donkey stone-large flat grey stone used to scrub ingrained dirt off collars and cuffs
Last line ,first stanza refers to the fact that many women out of either shame or modesty aways dried their underwear indoors ,even on the hottest of days in industrial Lancashire.
Larry Lark-total twat
18 Jan 06
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i lark you larry.
What's with the foot-notes? Are we stupid? This needs some grammar help. How about some pronouns in your sentences instead of just beginning with the verb or an adverb? I want to like it but something irritates me about the wording.
Larrylark! You know I love you but...
I do find the punctuation unusual in certain places, BUT I love this poem. The descriptions are consistently entertaining and vivid. The grandmother's character is irresistible. Lines 13+14 are tumbling and steamy. "glumly floated into a brave new world" is just so amusing. And the reflection in the last line provides a well-scrubbed finish. Wonderful, Larry the Laundry Lark [ 10 ]
"Can't be doin' wi' it an' dunna want te try ewt new fangled," I can just here that woman loud and real Larry :0)
all the best
Beautiful character study, concrete imagery, and engaging (I also got chance to pat myself on the back for knowing what "Vim" is, thank God for long Lancaster vacations). I love the internal rhymes and the word/soundplay throughout. My only suggestion is that the dialect in line 2, while assuredly accurate, feels a bit overdone; "Can't be doin' wi' it an' dunna want te try ewt new fangled" has six words out of thirteen modified in some way, and I stumbled on it even on 2nd read. Maybe make it easier for 'mericans? Good work.
I prefer Y-fronts myself.
Larry string vest Lark
Far from me to think your stupid but some people have previously complained that they don't get some of the English colloquialisms in some of my poems so i thought i would provide some explanations.Isabelle,I love you too.
Larry reet grand lad Lark
Thanks for reading,your comments are much appreciated
Larry mangled up in blue Lark
footnotes are good at times...
for instance--that recent poem "ipissimisms" or whatever it was.
that word does not exist...
a footnote would have been helpful on that one.
Ipsissimus means, higher self or selfhood.
Thats because she lives just up the street from me ,a 90 year old woman with 1930's habits.Thanks Pip,speak to you some more soon
Larry History in the making Lark
Thanks for the crit,most old people round thid neck of the woods speak like that and thays why i can never understand wor t'hel and flippin' 'eck theer on abawt.
Larry master of the dialect Lark
I find myself keeping footnotes ever since a steam roller ran over my feet
Larry flatfoot Lark
dont you jus wuv it when extwended metaphwor jus comes
togewer woik dat so fine and dandy?
wel, oi do
Something I can relate to, my great, great grandmother (who lived in Pailsey) passed away aged 97. She had never owned a washing machine.
To further to discussion on Larry’s footnote and Issabel grasp of the English Language in its varying guises) please consider the following:
There is no egg in eggplant or ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple...
Is cheese the plural of choose?
If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
In what language do people recite at a play, and play at a recital?
Ship by truck, and send cargo by ship?
Have noses that run and feet that smell?
Park on driveways and drive on parkways?
Sweetmeats are candies, while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat.
We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square, and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
And why is it that writers write, but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce, and hammers don't ham?
If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth beeth?
One goose, 2 geese. So, one moose, 2 meese?
One index, two indices?
How can the weather be hot as hell one day and cold as hell another?
When a house burns up, it burns down.
You fill in a form by filling it out, and an alarm clock goes off by going on.
When the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.
And why, when I wind up my watch, I start it, but when I wind up this essay, I end it?
English muffins were not invented in England or French fries in France.
You know Y-fronts will fry any Larry juniors, right?
Maybe Opal'd be happy for that ^_^
Hey wot woger cool to the drip
My great grandmother never even saw a washing machine.
Dear Unknown with the long reply
My dear friend,you have the potential to be a great philosopher
Larry potty trained Lark
She's stuck it out all these years so i guess so.
Opal’s bloomers would of course give granny’s mangle a considerable testing no doubt, and filled her indoor line to capacity...
There would be no chance of them blowing up the ginnels on a windy day.
Barrage balloons are of course not unknown in Lancashire.
antiques make me sneeze, but you write like a published poet.
Ever seen The Mangler?
It's a b horror flick about a possessed industrial laundry machine.
I kind of like it in the very end, when they're running from the machine down in some tunnel thingies, and the hero is dragging the damsel behind him, and his shirt slips down to reveal his shoulder, and it's strong and oddly vulnerable and I found it very sexy. But then the machine ate his brainy brother-in-law with the Farah Faucet hair. That was kind of funny.
I like your pome.
Well, it makes me feel kind of dirty, like I need me some suds.
Po Mangled Perv Vertea
Just like gasbags are not unknown in your neck of the woods ,or should that read neck.
Larry helium gas Lark
Flattery will get you everywhere
Larry in his own write Lark
I once worked in a Chinese Laundry and though i have to say the pay was good it was a sweet ans sour experience.I will look up the film you mentioned.
Larry Number 43 Lark
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