Washing Day Hues ~ When you have little, it becomes so much easier to share




Where light peeps at them through tiny windows,

 Smiling faces 

alive with gratitude, perhaps for a sunny day –

“a washing day!”

Where wardrobes hang safely in the streets,

where dreams could be drenched by evening,

Where the monotonous sound of

“oh, but you haven’t washed the windows today”

Is drowned out on corrugated roofs, running into buckets.

No drowning in thoughts here today –

only a disposition of sunshine;

smiling, laughing, little dresses hanging

Where pearls do not lace the streets

but laughter does

Where people always smile –

did I say that already?

Forgive me; I say it again,

They smile –

Pearly teeth set against a grateful canvas of open happy faces,

greeting small hands written with the dirt of circumstance,

reaching for a small moment of cheerful colour in amused glares and welcoming stares.

Why wouldn’t you want to run through broken streets of recycled happiness?

Dancing, singing, smiling back at happy faces –

Where there is perhaps just enough for today,

Where the weight of thirty-three potatoes balances gratefully on heads,

still smiling, laughing –

She will soften them on the fire tonight, in that large pot she shares with the woman down the road who lives behind that broken blue door.

In this simple place where cardboard dreams are held up by metal frames,

where joy for children is a car made from a broken trolley –

In this place,  sharing is a way of life.


4 thoughts on “Washing Day Hues ~ When you have little, it becomes so much easier to share

  1. Oh this is beautifully written and photographed! I can feel the emotion in the air.
    Wonderful! Would that I had your talent for words…

    • Thank you dear Dale,
      I know you understand and celebrate gratitude, so all I can say is that I am incredibly grateful to have experienced a day in the life of this little community.

  2. Your entry – very touching, it reminded me beautiful poem of my favorite Polish poet. I think, this people wear their suffering with dignity.
    Again, learned something.
    Thank you so much!!!!

    Mr. Cogito Meditates on Suffering

    All attempts to remove
    the so-called cup of bitterness–
    by reflection
    frenzied actions on behalf of homeless cats
    deep breathing

    one must consent
    gently bend the head
    not wring the hands
    make use of the suffering gently moderately
    like an artificial limb
    without false shame
    but also without unnecessary pride

    do not brandish the stump
    over the heads of others
    don’t knock with the white cane
    against the windows of the well-fed

    drink the essence of bitter herbs
    but not to the dregs
    leave carefully
    a few sips for the future

    but simultaneously
    isolate within yourself
    and if it is possible
    create from the matter of suffering
    a thing or a person

    with it
    of course

    entertain it
    very cautiously
    like a sick child
    forcing at last
    with silly tricks
    a faint

    Zbigniew Herbert

    Translation by John Carpenter and Bogdana Carpenter

    • Thank you Mrs Dalloway. What amazed me about visiting this place was the sense of joy in the simplest of things, where there is a strong sense of community and everyone smiles and chats to their neighbour along the way… It makes me wonder what the concept of having “enough” really is.

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