Best Chief Cook And Bottle Washer Poems | Poetry

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Lady Venus On Her Deathbed

Lady Venus was on her deathbed, eyes closed, in the same position as Cindy, the nurse, had left her.  Her breathing was shallow, but it sometimes paused, frightening Cindy's sister, sitting in for Cindy.  The sister sometimes leaned over to take Lady Venus' pulse, weak it was - hardly there.

Eventually, Cindy returned with cups of tea, and the sisters drank it silently.  Cindy mused over what she knew of Lady Venus' life.  First in the line of thoughts was her marriage to Lord Venus, a wealthy stockbroker in London. Then came the horrible thought of his accident five years later, when a pony and trap had overturned.  Lady Venus was inconsolable... Pregnant with the second Venus child, she mostly stayed indoors and was very rude to Cindy, who, as well as being nurse, was chief cook and bottle washer.  Everything calmed down after Venus No. 2, and Cindy would often babysit while Lady Venus started ten years of party-going.

This it was that led to the demise, Cindy was sure.  All that alcohol - whisky, above all.  Often, Lady Venus would hiccup her way home and drop into bed... The two little Venuses hardly saw her.  And look at her now - on her deathbed, dribbling, the end near... The clock chimed five, slowly, and on the fifth, Lady Venus' chest gave an awful sound - like a hyena giving birth to two Venuses.  She was dead.  An era closed.


Copyright © Julia Ward | Year Posted 2016