With Manic Efficiency

She takes the large dish in hand
rinsing it well before feeding it to the dishwasher,
noticing the stains in the sink.

With care and with rubber gloves,
she bleaches the darkness out of existence,
being careful not to inhale the fumes.

Next, all the messes, in every room
awaiting her professional touch,
laundry, toilets, floors and more.

It’s important to have it all in order,
she tells herself, a function of stability.
A calm exterior belies the mess inside.

She’s become the facilitator of happiness,
taking care of everyone else’s this and that
of expectations, a role of dependability.

What does it get her beyond the praise
left unspoken far too often
in the doing and undoing in the messes of others?

It’s been said “Cleanliness is next to godliness,”
also “Cleanliness becomes more important when godliness is unlikely,”
Nice sentiments. She just wants to be whole.

Too many times, she gave away too much of herself,
so that there’s nothing left, now that they have left her.
She’s running on repetition and it’s all that she knows.

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