An Unemployed Worker’s Home

          –Morgantown, West Virginia
          Walker Evans, July 1935

It’s the one in the mirror always sucks up the light
Gives some back to the real rocker by the newel
But you know, things in mirrors are always doing backwards
I can’t pin up my hair in front of no mirror—
Just do it by feel, like after dark

That’s what it is—mirrors make everything but them be dark
And around the edge, where everything tilts there,
It’s like looking at two sides of something at the same time—
You ever seen a pond with water striders on top
And you can see the leaves and maybe a turtle down in it?
There’s more in mirrors than most folks think—some,
I know some as keeps them covered with a scarf,
Especially at night you know
Anyway that rocker’s a good one—see how it’s tall in the back—
You can lean your head back when you’re not working on anything
Lean your head back and rest it there with your elbows
On those smooth arms and just let the song take you

In winter I move the rocker close up to the fire
Fire’s another thing that mirror takes
But this is where we keep it in summer—
It gets air and light from the doorway
And of course you get a headache, too
When the young’uns come tearing down the staircase—
That’s why there’s no bowl on that table n’more—
They knocked it right off

—kelly lenox allan