Auld Alliance

Lassie Dichtin her Feet

Sheena Blackhall

After Degas, 'Woman Drying her Feet', 1886, Louvre, Paris

Teddies cock on her duvet, three weird sisters.
The bedclaes yoam wi warmth, the quine's new-risen,
paddin ben tae the shooer, its weety mist
treetlin doon the waa in lichtenin runnels.
Conditioner, shampoo, smellies,
like the three wise men,
watchin the Ablution o the Crannies.

The chaumer's minimalist,
nae muckle press grinds timmer feet in the rug.
This is a warld o steel an synthetic gless
Hoovered twice a day, though the twa flat-mates,
lassies, are clean's a fussle, deintie in the mainners
wirkin in offices far nae stoor bides.

Laddette's nicht-oot photies cock aside the fruit
tastefu laid oot in a Japan cheena bowl.
They phone each ither daily. Nae rage, nae grease,
nae male disharmony.
Three heich fite lilies dowpit in a neuk
alangside tea lichts, signifee, 'Gie's Peace'.
Nae duntit beer tins scale alang the fleer.
Nae tabbie dowps are rammed inno the saucer.
Naebody kens the neebors.
Boyfriens veesit, like passin satellites.
Nae bairns skirls fur the briest, wi rinny snoot.

The lassie is dryin her taes in the warmth o her ain hame.
Her feet curl up tae meet the towel's caress.
Her weet hair hings, rats' sookins, roon her shooder.
She is alane in a warld o comfort an pooder,
naethin ayont the need tae be clean an dry,
like a cat booed ower its pelt, its pink tongue lickin
awa the yird o the day.
Her sma briests press on the hard fite meens o her knees.
Her back is booed, like a rainbow
arcing unner the sunlicht streamin in.