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The Old Flax-Wheel

by Virgil Viraldini Twitchell

Grandma sat there in her old arm-chair, humming her favorite tune,
Her head was white but her face as bright as a leafless rose in June;
She tapped her heel as she turned her reel, in a sing-song way so queer,
I can hear her yet, and I'll never forget, though I live a hundred year,
The distaff's rebound as it turned around, and grandma's cry, "Take care!"
'Twas always my fate, I found too late, the "old thing" pulling my hair.

She'd sit upright from morn till night, nor think it was a tax,
With toe and heel she'd turn the wheel and finger the glossy flax;
The old black cat asleep on the mat, the clock so tall and queer
Its tick, tick, tick, and the wheels' click, click, were musical sounds to hear;
The fiery blaze from the fire-place made shadows on the wall
Of revolving reel and spinning wheel, with grandma over all.