Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette

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Poem: "Knitwise"

This poem came out of the February 5, 2013 Poetry Fishbowl.  It was inspired by a prompt from kelkyag.  It has been sponsored by an anonymous donor as a gift for thesilentpoet.  This poem belongs to the series One God's Story of Mid-Life Crisis.


Shaeth watches Glenta knitting during services
and asks her what she's making.

"Slippers today," she says, not looking up.
"It's a tricky pattern. You're not ready for it yet."

Another time, he sees her knitting toys.
Silently she hands him a lop-eared rabbit
to send to his daughter Desdemona
whom he never sees but secretly loves anyway.

Blankets are much easier to make
than pieced slippers or seamless toys.
Even Shaeth and Trobby can make these,
which don't have to be perfect to be warm.

Glenta knits gloves with and without fingers,
made of thin cotton or thick gray wool.

She gives away a lot of sweaters.
"Drunks have a tendency to show up in rags," she says,
"and I'll not see them off the same way."

Her hats come in all styles, from plain smooth black
to solid bright shades with contrasting ear flaps
to stripes and triangles and crazy cableknits
or the silly pom-poms in any old color
that she makes to use up leftover bits of yarn.

Glenta knits socks with snug cuffs and turned heels,
joking, "Now I've covered people from head to toe."

Scarves, yes, Shaeth and Trobby can make those too,
long strips of knitting tied off with a playful fringe.

For the other grandmothers she knows,
Glenta knits shawls in a delicate shell pattern,
and if the old women talk about something other than knitting,
well, Shaeth and Trobby know better than to ask.

From the tag ends of wool that spinners call no good,
Glenta makes thick fluffy rugs to cover the wooden floors.
"There is no such thing as no good," she says.
Shaeth thinks again that Glenta is very wise.
Tags: crafts, cyberfunded creativity, family skills, fishbowl, poem, poetry, reading, spirituality, writing
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