© Brenda Joy

Winner, 2018 Humorous Section, ‘Oracles of the Bush’, Tenterfield, NSW.

A ruling I’ve just heard about that’s brought me to the fray
concerns the washing habits in some parts of USA.
Now from that land of liberty and ‘rights of people’ laws,
they’ve put some strange restrictions on to doing laundry chores.

They have no inhibitions re the right to tote a gun,
yet feel there’s things more sinister that never should be done.
In certain states a deed that earns a punishment by fine,
relates to hanging washing out to dry upon a line.

Oh, what a deprivation ladies face within those States –
to be forbidden to enjoy what in Australia rates
as part of our inheritance.  We can do as we please.
Our legacy allows our clothes to billow in the breeze

This solar thermal drying scheme is absolutely free
whilst scent of gum ambrosia smells wonderful to me.
And many US ladies feel the need to air their views;
they’ve set up ‘Right to Dry’ campaigns to be allowed to choose.

But protests get them no-where when their toffy neighbours frown
on those who want to show their clothes and “… bring our district down!”
They’d rather use devices guzzling fuel as they dry —
and so the US energy consumption shoots up high.

They use up carbon credits. They are not prepared to live
by taking full advantage of what Nature has to give.
Yet those who use appliances are sorry to attest
to shrinkages and loss of lint as clothes get more distressed.

And what is wrong with what we wear, especially when it’s clean?
Perhaps some prudish people don’t like undergarments seen,
but there are undies on display in every shopping place
so having them pegged out to dry is hardly a disgrace.

So let them keep their pseudo, rough and tumble modern world.
I’d much prefer to aerate sheets with wind – like sails unfurled.
Some rules to me are just unfair and if I must conform,
I’ll show my independent streak by kicking up a storm.

I’ll hoist my washing on the line and strut my wooden props
and if they take my ‘Hills’ away, I’ll pull out all the stops.
I’ll demonstrate the use of breeze, protest for open air
and on my happy rotary, you’ll see them dancing there…

…the bras and cotton panty briefs will flap with hubby’s jocks.
(Our smalls don’t set off smoke alarms or give electric shocks.)
I’ll blow my washing in the wind, my privileges I’ll flout,
and agitate to keep the right to let it all hang out.

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