Monday, January 31, 2011

COUNTRY COURTSHIP, by Velma West Sykes, 1929

He told her all the things he'd done that day--
Plowed all forenoon, and then had gone to town
For wire to mend a fence--and after that
Was done, the chores; and how he'd hurried through
To be with her. She blushed and swung her feet
And then began to argue how much more
She'd done that day--the butter that came slow,
The ironing that took up half of the day;
And then she showed a blister on her arm
Where it had touched the iron. His large rough hand
Closed over her small hard one, and their heads
Drew close together--breathlessly they kissed,
The drew themselves self-consciously apart
And laughed to hide the deep emotions stirred.

"Pa gave me the south eighty," he observed.
"It's got a house--not big--but good and warm."

"Ma gave me three new quilts last week," she said,
"My chest's so full the lid won't go clear down."

They kissed again, and apple blossoms fell
Around their feet and in the girl's dark hair.