Nine Days – Day Four

“Make do and mend” was a favourite saying of my parents and others in Britain who lived through World War 2. The ingrained attitude meant that in my teen years I spent many hours in a sort of darning purgatory. So I feel nothing but dismay as I review the darning paraphernalia that was left in our family sewing box. Yes, I can still “mend hosiery” (as the cards used to say so quaintly), but it will certainly never be a favourite occupation. Give me a poem to mend any time!

 

My Mother’s Book of Hours: Novena

IV

From just below the open lids

A humble darning-mushroom surfaces—

Rough-scuffed by all the years of cloth stretched

Over it by Granny, Mum & me (& now perhaps by you)

And scratched by needles flashing in & out

Tugging miles of Mending Thread for Hosiery

Unreeling yarn from those quaint darning cards

That no one uses in this century.

© Lizzie Ballagher

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