All my feelings would have been of common things

All my feelings are of common things
of the clock going on, of the next
meal or the last one, of the washing
on the line and if there's enough heat
to dry it, of how to clean a lawnmower
just enough to make the Salvation Army
man want to take it away, with old grey
grass stuck to the blades, the tyres that hold
dirt, like cleats in walking shoes. Also
a dryer I bought forty years ago.
I stick the manual and the expired
guarantee inside the metal drum.
All those clothes it turned and churned, the lint
that it trapped in its door. I once thought
many things would make my life happier
and now one by one I will let them go.


Rachel Bush was born in 1941 in Christchurch and grew up in Hawera. Until 2003 she was a teacher of English at a Nelson secondary school.

She produced several collections of poetry and her work also appeared in Faber’s Introduction 3, as well as in anthologies and journals such as SportLandfall and the Listener. Rachel died in 2016 in Nelson.

Poem source details >


Rachels Victoria University Press author page