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Ironing Skill
by
Peggy Trojan


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When I was trusted to iron

my father’s shirts,

white, starchy, cotton,

I took my time.

Smoothing the yoke,

then the sleeves, both sides,

the cuffs, inside and out,

then the shirt front, and back,

and around to the other side.

At the last, the collar, taking care

there were no creases by the points.

I hung them on hangers in the closet,

with all the buttons facing right.

At breakfast, I sat proudly as he ate,

ready for work, looking good,

no wrinkles in the collar.

 

This poem first appeared in Dust and Fire.
Used here with the author’s permission.

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

Peggy Trojan retired from teaching English to the north woods of Wisconsin.  She enjoys quilting, gardening, picking wild berries, and writing poetry.  A member of the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, she writes about family, her surroundings and her observations about life. 


New comments are closed for now.
Katrina:
Thank you, Peggy. I love the way you shape things.
Posted 09/26/2013 09:18 AM
paradea:
I was trusted to iron my father's boxer shorts...no easy task and never wrinkle- free, but he was always so complimentary of everything we did for him. Great memories brought back today by this wonderful poem. Thank you.
Posted 09/25/2013 09:38 AM
Ralph Murre:
Wonderful to be drawn back to these little memories of things our parents did right. Trust -- that's a lesson I must learn and re-learn almost daily, it seems.
Posted 09/25/2013 08:30 AM
njc:
"...I took my time." Not a chore, but a privilege, done with loving care. Brings back memories of the Saturday ironing. I wonder what the current equivalent would be; what do daughters do for their fathers now that would bring a similar sense of satisfaction and pride? Nice piece to contemplate today.
Posted 09/25/2013 08:21 AM
Charly:
Special memories!! Thanks!!
Posted 09/25/2013 07:25 AM
Janet Leahy:
A great first line, "When I was trusted to" conjures similar memories for the reader. Thanks, Peggy.
Posted 09/25/2013 07:11 AM
erinsnana:
I too ironed my father's shirts...I can still remember the scent of the steam that wafted upward as I worked...your poem brought this back to me!
Posted 09/25/2013 06:50 AM


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