As the World Turns

The morning after her honeymoon,
she grimaced into her Playtex girdle,
heaving and wincing
into the dingy polyester.

Six metal garters swung
free inside her slacks,
sprung from the elastic hold
of her silk Sunday stockings.

Her power-net tummy panel
braced her flurried steps
as she flung the Hoover
over the beige, wall-to-wall

living room carpet.
The cord curled around her palm
like the poised hand
of a nimble dance partner.

Everywhere else she swept
and lashed each linoleum square
with a Comet-crusted rag
until every scuff surrendered –

just in time
for ‘As The World Turns’
and three blessed
Old Gold filtered cigarettes.

The rigid swell
of her belly cradled
a silver-rimmed
crystal ashtray

still fragranced
with cedar
from her claw-footed
hope chest.

Lora Keller


After growing up blocks from Wisconsin’s Fox River, Lora has lived in New York City and Kansas City and now lives in Milwaukee. After college, she was a scriptwriter, public relations executive and educator then owned two small businesses. Her poems are published widely and include a Pushcart Prize nomination.

© 2019