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Family Life During the Long Peace

I remember the corned beef of my childhood,
And the bread that we cut with a knife,
When the children helped with the housework,
And the men went to work not the wife.

The cheese never needed a fridge,
And the bread was so crusty and hot,
The children were seldom unhappy,
And the wife was content with her lot,
well, maybe, maybe not.

I remember the milk from the bottle,
With the yummy cream on the top,
Our dinner came hot from the oven,
And not from a freezer; or shop.

The kids were a lot more contented,
They didn’t need money for kicks,
Just a game with their friends on the road,
And sometimes the Saturday flicks.

I remember the shop on the corner,
Where biscuits for pennies were sold
Do you think I’m a bit too nostalgic?
Or is it….I’m just getting old?

Bathing was done in a washtub,
With plenty of rich foamy suds
But the ironing seemed never-ending
As mom pressed everyone’s ‘duds’.

I remember the slap on my backside,
And the taste of soap if I swore
Anorexia and diets weren’t heard of
And we hadn’t much choice what we wore.

Do you think that bruised our ego?
Or our initiative was destroyed?
We ate what was put on the table
And I think life was better enjoyed.

– Author Unknown

Via Kesler atA Poem I Came Across – Maggie’s Farm

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • ghostsniper August 15, 2021, 8:03 AM

    It’s nice to know that I lived most of that. Now, it’s like a little audio-visual library in my head that I get to visit anytime I want, helped along by words such as these.

  • David August 15, 2021, 8:11 AM

    I always woke first in a family of five. A bowl of cereal, fresh milk delivered early that morning so mostly cream in the bowl and lots of sugar. yum

  • John Venlet August 15, 2021, 8:47 AM

    Though a number of lines in that poem stirred memories for me, the lines “I remember the slap on my backside,” and “And the taste of soap when I swore,” were especially stirring.

    The slap on the backside, though these were rather infrequent in our home growing up, were administered with a “Seater Heater,” similar to this.

    The soap used, if I was caught swearing, was typically Dial soap, applied vigorously to the teeth, and not just the mouth in general. A strong deterrent when a child to be sure.

  • Francis W. Porretto August 15, 2021, 11:44 AM

    Many of the deteriorations are consequences of the inflation of 1964 – 1983. When Mom left the house to work for wages, family incomes increased by 30% to 70%, depending on several factors. The increase in income usually greatly exceeded the extra burden from inflation, and as the late, great Cyril Northcote Parkinson has told us: “Expenditure rises to meet income…and tends to exceed it.” Not only was Mom’s absence from the home not a good thing on net balance; the incremental discretionary income was, more often than not, spent in ways that were not good for minor children.

  • Dirk August 15, 2021, 1:31 PM

    Hummmmm, I always thought it was the book titled, “ I’m Ok,,,,, Your Ok!,…