The Bag Girl by Paul Angus Barber

Just fourteen years old and set to work. Just fourteen years old and I am grown.

To collect the laundry is my job, be they infected or soiled, I mustn’t moan.

I take the stairs many times a day to the splendid inspiring house.

Transformed from within, so I am told, by the caretaker’s beautiful young spouse.

One hour the bags are heavy, the next the bags are light.

Whatever the weight, I glide through the halls staring with wonder and delight.

If not for the war I would never have seen inside; I gush with disbelief.

Yet if not for the war my family would know nothing of sorrow and grief