Tags on Towels

I recently completed my first MOOC or, for those not in the know, “massive open online course.” A MOOC is a FREE (or at least very affordable) course that is available online to a huge, often unlimited, number of participants. Since much of my work life has centred around improving and increasing access to higher education, I was excited about discovering MOOCs and even more excited to participate in one. The course that I took was entitled “Sharpened Visions: A Poetry Workshop” offered by California Institute of the Arts.

While the course did not teach any poetic techniques that were unfamiliar to me, what it did do was refresh my memory and encourage me to flex my poetic muscles. I highly recommend the course to anyone, even though it may be focused slightly more toward beginning writers.

For more information on the course, click here.

Following is a poem that I worked on for the course . . .


Tags on Towels

Your sigh is a tag on a towel.
“Wash with like clothing”?
I have no clothing like towels – just towels.

It scratches and I keep meaning to cut it off
until the next time it scratches
my naked body, caressed and reminded
of its vulnerability.

Threadbare confidence, fraying, the damp
wet cleanliness clinging
in defiance, on the line
because “low heat” is impossible.

I ruined all my clothes once – with a towel.
Or was it the other way around?
They all came with labels I never read.

My clothes are new but I still use the same towels.
Debris clings to everything.  Little bits. Little tags
on towels – little sighs.


© Lisa Mulrooney

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