The Poetry Kit MAGAZINE



From CITN 5 - Aug 2001


It could've been me.
by Mick Moss
Next to the painting it said
"Mother washing baby in sink" - 1953
the year I was born
we bathed one after another in a tin bath
that was kept outside on the coal bunker during the week
on Sunday nights, bath night, just before supper
it was dragged into the scullery
which was what you call a kitchen now
and filled with scalding water from the copper
which you call an immersion heater
and scrubbed from head to toe with Wrights Coal Tar soap
you don't have that now
you have herbal body wash from the body shop
and use a nice soft natural sponge
our mum used a wooden scrubbing brush
that took your top layer of skin off
these days it's called exfoliating
and is supposed to keep you looking young
we called it torture and made us look like burn victims
you smell like the scent of a summer breeze
we smelt like disinfectant
you have organic pizza and low fat chips
with sugar-free juice
and watch satellite TV
before going to bed in your own centrally heated room
under a cosy Teletubbies duvet
we had toast and as a Sunday treat cocoa made from condensed milk
and slept head to toe under sheetless blankets
when we eventually stopped shivering.