By Staff
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Box 193 C, Rt. 1 Davisville, WV 26142

I have an answer for the delightful poem ‘An Engine
Widow’s Lament’ by Karen Woofenden of Brattleboro, Vermont
(July, 1986 GEM). I also say ‘Bravo, Karen.’ I too followed
a husband, son, and three grandsons from one engine show to another
’til one fine day things changed.

I got the Maytag engine to our old family washing machine out
and cleaned it up inside and out. I told my son that I would paint
some flowers on it and join the gang at the next steam and gas
engine show. My long, hairy-legged son said NO engine should have
flowers painted on it. Indeed, he would NOT man any engine that had
pink paint and rosebuds painted on it! I very sweetly informed him
that I manned that engine when he was a wee baby to wash his
‘you know whats’, and I could man it again, even though
I’m past seventy.

So I painted it a beautiful engine green, polished the brass
plate, etc. I decorated it all over with gold leaves on trailing
brown vines and white daisies with yellow centers. I printed me a
sign calling it Granny’s Li’l Putt-Putt Used since 1929.
And you wouldn’t believe the peaceful enjoyment of setting up
my Putt-Putt, anchoring it to the ground, putting up my Granny
sign, unfolding my chair, then leaning back and just listening. I
hear whacking engines, hissing engines, loud engines all around me,
but Granny’s Li’l Putt-Putt just keeps saying
‘chuk-prrrrr, chuk-prrrrr, chuk-prrrrr.’ And I remember how
easy I could get my washing done and out on the line fifty years

My little Maytag engine feels real proud, I know, to be dressed
up in garlands of daisies, and maybe it has forgiven me for making
it run the washer full of knitty-gritty you know whats.

How sweet it was and is today. You are right, Karenso let’s
join ’em!

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