“I think I can understand that feeling about a housewife’s work being like that of Sisyphus (who was the stone rolling gentleman). But it is surely in reality the most important work in the world. What do ships, railways, miners, cars, governments, etc. exist for except for that people may be fed, warmed, and safe in their own homes? As Dr. Johnson said, ‘To be happy at home is the end of all human endeavor.’ … We wage war in order to have peace, we work in order to have leisure, we produce food in order to eat it. So your job is the one for which all others exist.”
My Joe’s been sick, Amy read. Keep him in your prayers. She scrolled through her news feed, her finger moving faster and faster.
We’ve all tested positive.
Been down for a month.
Feeling better, but still have trouble with stairs.
Pray for my David. He’s never been sicker.
“You don’t know that’s what he has.” Matt stood in the doorway. She hadn’t heard him come in.
Amy’s eyes fixed on his silhouette. She turned back to her phone, then down to the blanket-bundle on the bed. “But he has a fever.”
Matt came forward. He placed a hand over the screen, pulled it from her grasp, and set it on the nightstand. He kneeled beside the bed. “I know, but you’ve been reading bad news all day. Maybe longer.”
Amy sighed. Another tear escaped down her cheek.
“Here.” He moved the comforter aside. Pushing her legs out to hang over the side, he rubbed at them; massaged her feet. “Go shower. I can take over.”
She met his gaze. She hadn’t moved from where he shifted her.
“Please, Amy. He’ll be fine for a few minutes.”
She shifted. He stood. She let him help her rise. She did not let him walk with her. “Stay here.” she said, head raised and eyes locked on his. “I don’t want him to be alone for even a second.”
Matt nodded and moved to the bed. He sat in the same spot she’d vacated. Looking up, he saw her watching. “I’ll stay here. I promise.”
Now she nodded. Her shadow followed her down the hall. The bathroom door closed.
He heard the shower water turn on. The bundle of blankets to his side whimpered and a fist emerged. “Shhhhh,” Matt said, stroking his son’s face. He moved his finger to the fist. It held. “Daddy’s here.”
©2022 Chel Owens
The kids just screamed, “I’ve gotta go!”
The trailer’s back there, in the snow;
We needed it for food, sleep, clothes
Its tires fell off and it won’t go.
Cry Mommy, Daddy, kids, baby
Sally poked him; “Bill’s breathing!”
The car’s all out of gasoline
No one’s ever changed Baby.
Dad’s just asked why they vacay
Mom’s offered to give him ‘way
Low tire pressure‘s on display
When we get to far, far ‘way
Mom and Dad will droop and sway
All the kids will want to play;
Says Mom, “Why do we e’er vacay?”
©2020 Chel Owens
There’s still time to enter YOUR poem for this week’s A Mused Poetry Contest!!
The calloused feet came first; followed by child-bearing hips, a muffin top, an ample bosom, and a graying haircut.
Neither could say who was more surprised to see the other, nor who had better reason to run away from home.
©2020 Chel Owens
In response to Deb’s 42-word story prompt, which was my pick?
It’s time to sharpen your wits, gather up your lock picking tools and put your head down for this week’s theme is …
What are you escaping from? Where, when, how? This is all for you to decide, the only requirement is that you fit it all in the 42 word limit.
You better sit up;
Better open your eyes-
Better get up
‘Fore you get a surprise.
Morning Mom is stomping the ground.
She’s opened your blinds;
Yelled at you twice-
Gonna come give you sched’ling advice.
Morning Mom is starting to frown.
She knew when you weren’t sleeping,
Staying up to read, instead.
And now she’s leaning over you
And her breath could curdle bread.
Oh! You better sit up;
Better open your eyes-
Better get up
‘Fore she brings in the ice.
Morning Mom is layin’ it down…
©2019 Chelsea Owens
Also posted at my motherhood site.
I did it! Well -the doctors did. Yesterday, around 13:44, the obstetrics surgical team extracted my fifth boy.
He weighed 6 lbs 4 oz (rounded up) and measured 19 inches long.
I’m not allowed to go into labor, so we scheduled the operation at 37 weeks. All in all, this has been the best C-Section recovery I’ve had. I can only attribute that to the skill of the team, the healthiness of my body, and to the many prayers I know people offered on our behalf.
Because of privacy reasons, I dislike posting pictures online. Since I know he’ll change rapidly and you’re all DYING to see, however, here are two I took this morning:
We haven’t agreed on a name yet, but I keep that information private as well. 🙂
©2019 Chelsea Owens
The results of this contest are going to be delayed every time; until my children start free, public babysitting at the end of this month. Sorry.
I won’t make you wait any longer. This week’s winner is:
I can’t say I’m that crazy
And when I’ve had a few things get a bit hazy
Anyway, before very long she’ll hopefully be pushing up a daisy
Almost inevitably she has to be regarded
As a favourite relative and not discarded
Because if I say otherwise I’ll get bombarded
And cursed and I can ill afford to be unguarded
In the matter.
There’s very little in Maisie’s life that I approve
But she’s fabulously rich and my lot is likely to get improved
Thus I’m feeling behoved
To love her and hope she dies soon, overfed and boozed;
My darling third cousin twice removed!
Congratulations, Daisy -I mean, Bruce! You are the most terrible poet of the week!
I really had difficulty narrowing things down. I think everyone did well at mis-matching meter, misspelling or misusing words, and tweaking rhyming patterns where they ought not to be tweaked. Bruce’s entry won by merit of it sounding the worst when I read them all aloud. Vocalizing helped me catch the true spirit of his terrible meter, and dub him the most terrible poet of them all (this week).
Good work to everyone! Here are the runners-up:
A Tribute to my once favourite brother
by Deb Whittam
We were brothers (political license here)
Who challenged the stars to duels
With the words we wrote.
We were comrades (more political license)
Who downed Guinness, ok perhaps not Guinness but its … political license …
As we coloured the sunset with our crayons.
We were amigos (Like the three amigos but my chest is hairier.)
Who took the wrong turn, not that I was navigating, hey Charles,
Then built mountains for astronauts to scale.
We were all we needed, just us, you know, you and me, two is better than one, ain’t it grand to be a duo and not in a band,
Who composed melodies that sent
Wayward angels into raptures of delight.
We were all of this and then,
My brother over the seas (Ok not technically my brother but political license and all that jazz)
You had the gall to beat me and now you are just a stop sign I will tear down and stomp on while pretending it’s your head.
Bless her heart
She’s just old
And loves to scold
Surveying the kingdom
Nothing is pleasant
No good words spoken
Especially about peasants
Leaves are trash
Unmade beds are a mess
Perfection is the name of the game
Otherwise out of the will
You’ll be unnamed
I fear she will live forever
And ever and ever
The one thing she didn’t perfect
Was how to undo the defect
Of living so long
And so goes my song
Oh my darling Auntie M
You are loved
With all your foibles
Oh my darling Auntie M
My gran’s budgie ate Trill, he chewed up the seeds with a will,
He was imaginatively called Budgie Boy,
a mirror with a bell was his favorite toy,
which seemed to give him joy.
But when you opened the cage door,
he’d fly out and mess on the floor.
Then gran to no avail,
would try to coax him from the curtain rail,
my grandma’s budgie, who ate Trill.
The Bongo Bingo Poet Beat
Oh! My dear old Uncle Mingo
How he loved playing his Bingo.
Russian Roulette in retirement with all his savings
Soon became his weekly misbehaving.
One fine day he died and was broke;
His lawyer gathered us around the table at the woke
“Nothing’s left, nothing at all;
And you owe me $3500 for telling you all.”
And now Uncle Mingo’s dead, it’s true;
I’m at his funeral, dressed in blue.
And when we turned from the grave
“Bingo!” was heard, shouted out by the knave.
Uncle Fred and the Things He Ded
From when I was young, ‘til when I’m dead
I’ll always remember Uncle Fred
When I was just a fresh-faced kid
He told me all the things he did
He climbed all mountains and fought all wars
He visited every nation’s shores
He had several PhDs
All attained with relative ease
He said he could do most anything
And even taught a pig to sing
My esteem for the man could not be higher
A brilliant man and accomplished liar
Thanks for playing!! Come back in about 12 hours for next week’s prompt.
Bruce: D. Wallace Peach created this graphic that you can use (if you want) for a badge of honor as the winner:
Welcome to Terrible Poetry Contest #36!
Need a bit of guidance? Read my basic outline here. This is the sort of contest only undertaken by the satirical at heart, by the artists who know that starving is a silly way to be.
Here are the specifics for this week:
- Topic: A tribute to your ‘favorite’ relative. We all have them: that maternal aunt who means well, that grandfather who keeps asking when you’re going to make something of yourself, that sister who’s so successful you just want to bless her heart.
- Length is totally up to you, but I prefer short. Grandma probably does too, Dearie.
- Rhyming is optional. You do what feels right to you, like that time you were with what’s-his-face -remember? That didn’t end well, now did it? -Of course, your relationships usually don’t turn out for the best. I was just telling your mother, the other day, that…
- Speaking of, I’m sure your mother would have something to tell her bridge club if you made it terrible. We wouldn’t want yet another Christmas where I only have your collection of Star Wars toys to share in the family newsletter, now would we?
- Let’s not shock your relatives, unless cementing your status as a Black Sheep is your thing. PG-13 or classier is fine.
You have till 8:00 a.m. MST next Friday (August 2) to submit a poem.
Use the form below if you want to be anonymous for a week.
If not, and for a more social experience, include your poem or a link to it in the comments.
From curly hair to larger feet
And drooling, dozing, sniffling snores;
From skin tags, spots, and extra heat
And sudden change to teenage pores;
From stomach smashed and bladder squished
And nausea any time awake;
From snacks on which one must subsist
And baths that one must never take;
From ever-spreading stretch mark lines
And complications ev’ry term;
From husband flirts one must decline…
You wish you’d never seen That Sperm!
I’m about 16 weeks along in my pregnancy. As such, the doctor offered a quick ultrasound peek to see whether a couple of dresses or a few more black eyes were in our future.
It’s another boy. Number five. If half our kids had a higher potential height, we’d have a basketball team.
So far, they seem bent on Lord of the Flies mixed with Hunger Games -but- that’s childhood, right?
I’m up and past bleeding but still have “morning” sickness all day, every day. The baby’s heart rate and measurements look great every time. For now, we’re expecting him to be surgically removed from my abdominal cavity near the start of December.