Today in the U.S.A. we celebrate Labor Day. It marks the end of the traditional season for summer vacation. School children return to class and signs of colder weather begin to creep in to our awareness.
For today’s prompt, I’d like you to consider the topic of work. Manual labor, industry, health care, education, manufacturing. Whatever. Perhaps you’d like to visit your own current or past work situation or that of someone close to you. Write your thoughts in prose or poetry and add a link to your blog or website so that others may share in your reflections. (Trust me, if you are looking to increase visitors to your pages, you will.)
This is a poem I wrote a while back. It’s a look at nursing (my profession) from the other side of the gurney.
The Other Side
I watch her hurry by—
An aura of anger
thrusts her forward
like a rocket booster.
Too many patients?
She doesn’t glance my way.
No time to read my pain.
Fear closes in on me.
cradles my aching body.
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I like how you were able to view your own work from the viewpoint of the patient. The “aura of anger” is intriguing and makes me want another poem from the nurse’s perspective!
Your prompt caused me to look at a work in progress today, a fictional account of the diaries of my great aunt that I am transcribing. As I’m writing this novel, I ask myself: Can the life of an ordinary woman doing ordinary work be extraordinary? Here’s a paragraph I thought of when I pondered your theme of work:
“She puts on her thick work coat and wraps her head and face in a long shawl that used to be her mamma’s. As soon as she steps outside, the wind and sleet slap her back, so that she has to steady herself before moving on. Will is feeding the pigs. She sees him bent over a trough, and she is suddenly unsure of what she will say, feeling much younger than her thirty-eight years and unready for the responsibility of telling a grown man that his mother is dying. This is what marriage is, she thinks, the sharing of moments like this that cut through the everyday chores and ordinary conversation.”
That is beautifully written, Lisa. I’m so glad you shared it with us.
ah – you feel even worse when someone treats you like this when you’re already ill – you found great words to describe this..
I’m afraid I have a lot of experience on both sides of the gurney!
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Happy Labor’s Day!