Sweep

Mourning dove
Keens plaintive,
Followed by
Squeaky-wheel wingbeats,
As this old broom
Traces paths
Through dust
Across worn wooden floors.

Finds the corners
Where shadows gather
And grow.
Stained walls,
Spider-cracked ceilings
Take the strain.
Call a wind
To make them
Moan and sing.

Clearing and feeding,
Clearing and feeding,
Endless work
Of living
Among the living.

Mother knows bitter
Medicines
Kept high on a shelf
Must be sweetened.

But he speaks splinters —
Barbed and pushing deep.
We paint them
With tar,
And they fester —
Tipping a scale
Toward what is worse
Than stinging sharp:

A dullness that grows
Into these prominences.
Shovels full of hurt.
Burial mounds
For the unsaid.

Walk it off, now.
Walk it off.
Let the wild
Sing honey,
And take it up again.

Old broom,
Painted handle
Worn to wood
By silenced hands.
Let the work
Begin anew.

Shared at Open Link Night No. 60 over at the Pub. Crack a beer (or beverage of your own choosing) and head on over there for some good reading. Cheers!

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About Emily

I may or may not have: A. Dirt B. Ink C. Paint D. Wool under my fingernails.

9 responses to “Sweep”

  1. Mary says :

    “Endless work of living among the living “– I feel the hardness of work here. The shoveling, painting. Life isn’t easy here.

  2. Claudia says :

    the old broom works as a great metaphor here…life can be hard at times and tiring…somehow the part with the med that must be sweetened touched me…there’s some sweetness in the bitterness of life and mom, the wise woman, knows how to add it..

  3. Jenny Herner (@jennyherner) says :

    I love this! Sad but hopeful: There are shovels full of hurt but the wild still sings!

  4. brian miller says :

    smiles…love the imagery of the broom sweeping into the corners and clearing things away….and yes life is difficult but i love the strength in…Let the wild
    Sing honey,
    And take it up again….let the wild sing honey…ha…i love that…rise again it is a new day…

  5. Heaven (@asweetlust) says :

    I like the use of the old broom sweeping and beginning anew ~ I specially like these lines:
    Clearing and feeding,
    Endless work
    Of living
    Among the living.

    Nice to meet you ~

  6. kaykuala says :

    Take the strain.
    Call a wind
    To make them
    Moan and sing.

    Yes, life’s a struggle and a sacrifice. It’s still ok as not many can enjoy such care and abundance! Nicely Emily!

    Hank

  7. Tony says :

    I enjoyed reading this. Life can be hard, especially when we so often seem to live to work – always sweeping, painting, feeding endlessly. But there is joy and hope too – wildness and honey and song which helps to make it more bearable. Nice to read your writing.

  8. Poet Laundry says :

    “A dullness that grows
    Into these prominences.
    Shovels full of hurt.
    Burial mounds
    For the unsaid.”

    Wow, so poignant. You really have painted this well. A great piece.

  9. John (@bookdreamer) says :

    Describes struggle so well

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