MA’S OLD GALVANIZED WASHTUB
[TAKEN FROM IOWA VFW VOICE, MARCH 2009, ALSO FOUND AT COWBOYPOETRY.COM AND ROOTSWEB.ANCESTRY.COM]
Did you ever take your Saturday bath, and try to wash an’ scrub
While squattin’ down on your haunches, in a galvanized washing tub?
If not, then you ain’t missed a thing, but now I’m telling you what’s right,
I done it ‘til I wuz almost grown, on every doggone Saturday night.
In summer it was bad enuff, but in winter it was rough,
Spreading papers, buckets and kettles, an’ all of that sort of stuff.
Getting ready for that ordeal, was only half the rub,
Of takin’ a bath on Saturday night, in a galvanized washin’ tub.
Did you ever stand there stripped to the skin, a wood stove bakin’ your hide,
A dreadin’ to put your dern foot in, fer fear you’d be burned alive?
Finally you’d get the temperature right, an’ into the tub you’d crawl,
That cold steel’d touch your back, and you’d squeal like a fresh stuck hog!
Then you’d get outta the tub, next to the stove and stand there drippin’ and shakin’
The front of your body is freezing to death, while the back of your body is a bakin’.
Shiverin’ ‘n’ shakin’, burning’ and bakin’, that’s the price I had to pay,
That awful ordeal ’ll haunt me, until I’m old and gray.
I ain’t done yet, there’s something else, that I’ve been wanting to say,
I wuz the youngest of all us kids, who bathed on Saturday.
We all bathed accordin’ to age, and I fell last in order,
Which meant I had to wash myself, in their dad-blamed dirty water.
Now, I’m a gal o’ clean habits, and believe in a bath a week,
It helps to keep me healthy and freshen my physique:
But if I had my druthers, I’d rather eat a bug,
Than take my Saturday bath in a galvanized washing tub!