Magician of laundry


Magician of laundry,
my father spun wonders
from the discarded, every Sunday,
from noonís light swollen with apples
to duskís dark pear
heavy with silence and honey.


He rinsed and rung and pounded,
making earth, blood,
the whole soiled past
disappear,
as he pulled dryer sheets from his sleeves
like secret scarves.


He drooped towels and towels
on chairs, like boneless cats,
married each good sock to its destined mate,
dropped sundry outcasts in a pile,
his hands, worn smooth as white gloves,
folding blankets in milky waves.


And the bed sheets!
Stacks and stacks
of baptized fallen angels,
the fragile scent
of wings redeemed by starch
and dreaming of clotheslines.


No flame untouched by wind
could match the calm of his whistling
as he worked and waited,
watching the years roll round.


Let others pen
their desperate annotations of the stars.
My fatherís world is turning still
through a universe of rags and memories.

Sean Lause

About the poet: Sean Lause teaches courses in Shakespeare, The American Short Story and Composition at Rhodes State College in Lima, Ohio. His work has appeared in The Mid-American Review, The Minnesota Review, Poetry International, The Mother Earth International Journal, The Beloit Poetry Review, European Judaism, The Xavier Review and Frog Pond.