Women’s Work


I would rather quilt than eat.
Put a pieced top over the batting,
then put top and batting over the backing.
Bind a blanket that hugs.

Warmth with beauty came out of necessity.

Whether I stay with traditional designs;
Log Cabin with its hearth center,
Mariner’s Compass to guide,
Delectable Mountains to border the Medallion Center,

I am inspired by generations of women.

At the quilt show, I see Baskets full of Flowers,
Dresden Plate, Bow-Tie, Drunkard’s Path,
Fans, Double Wedding Rings and
hexified Grandmothers Garden.

They remind me of the quilts my grandmother sewed.

Shoo Fly, Churn Dash, Four Squares,
One-Color Quilts with Amish quilting designs,
Kits from the forties with flowers appliquéd on,
even Civil War designs with reproduction fabrics,

Speak to me about the importance of women.

I have begun putting Braids with Courthouse Steps
with Disappearing Four-Patch with New York Beauties.
Fused Art Quilts can be made in a day.
I don’t have much time left.

Like quilts, I will not last forever.

In the old days, women from the church would sew on one quilt
together. Today’s women go on retreats, sew for three days,
talk about color theory, battery operated electric
seam rippers, paper-piecing and thread.

Women’s work is still their art.


This poem was first published on Wilda Morris' Poetry Blog on February 29, 2016