If you would like to take part in
To neighbors passing by
There were no secrets you could keep
When clothes were hung to dry.
It also was a friendly link
for neighbors always knew
If company had stopped by
To spend a night or two.
For then you'd see the fancy sheets
And towels upon the line
You'd see the company table cloths
With intricate designs
The line announced a baby's birth
From folks who lived inside
As brand new infant clothes were hung
So carefully with pride
The ages of the children could
So readily be known
By watching how the sizes changed
You'd know how much they'd grown.
It also told when illness struck
As extra sheets were hung
Then nightclothes and a bathrobe, too
Haphazardly were strung.
It also said, " Gone on vacation Now"
When lines hung limp and bare
It told, " We're back!" when full lines sagged
With not an inch to spare.
New folks in town were scorned upon
If wash was dingy and gray
As neighbors carefully raised their brows
And looked the other way.
But clothes lines now are of the past
For dryers make work much less
Now what goes on inside the home
Is anybody's guess
I really miss that way of life
It was a friendly sign
When neighbors knew each other best
By what hung on the line.
~ Marilyn K. Walker
Basic Rules for Clothes Lines
- You have to wash the clothes line before hanging any clothes. ~ walk the entire lengths of each line with a wet cloth around the lines.
- You have to hang the clothes in a certain order and always hang whites with whites and hang them first.
- You never hang a shirt by the shoulders, always by the tail. What would the neighbors think?
- Wash days are on Mondays! Never hang clothes on a weekend or on Sunday. For Heaven's Sake!
- Hang the towels and sheets on the outside lines so you can hide your " unmentionables" in the middle. (perverts and busy bodies Ya' Know)
- It doesn't matter if it is sub zero temperatures. Clothes will freeze dry.
- Always gather clothes pins when taking down clothes. Pins left on the line are tacky!
- If you are efficient you will line the clothes up so each item does not require two clothes pins, but shares one of the clothes pins with the next washed item.
- Take clothes off the clothes line by dinner time, neatly folded in the clothes basket and ready to be ironed.
- IRONED? Well that's a whole other post.
A big thank you to my long time friend Sue Zaweski for sending this to me. As soon as I read it I knew I had to post it on Moodscapes.