Washer & Dryer 

Today the washer & dryer arrive.
You've spent the week preparing the area
like it's a nursery.

The delivery guys are on the friendly side.
You drop the steely name of your brother, but stop
at a boyfriend or husband, who, if it comes to that,
returns this afternoon from Afghanistan
in time for the game.

It never gets that far.
Except in your head, where it is always
exactly that far.

After they go, you stand in your basement and preside
over your first washer & dryer
in your first house.

Later you'll wander down, again and again,
to gaze at your washer & dryer,
gleaming white and waiting.

But nothing shakes it.
You're a woman
home alone.

-- Heather McNaugher


Heather McNaugher lives in Wilkinsburg and teaches at Chatham University. Her poems have appeared in Dirt Rag, Paper Street and New Ohio Review, and her chapbook, Panic & Joy, was published in 2008 by Finishing Line Press. Many writers featured in Chapter & Verse are guests of Prosody, produced by Jan Beatty and Ellen Wadey. Prosody airs every Tuesday at 7 p.m. on independent radio, WYEP 91.3 FM.


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