by A. Lawrence Vaincourt

When I was a kid I lived on a farm,
we were poor and the living was hard
For we hadn't a furnace or plumbing indoors,
just a privy out in the backyard.
Not having a bathroom, Mom needed a spot,
our poor little bodies to scub,
So on Saturday night by the old kitchen stove
we were bathed in a big copper tub.

T'was filled with warm water, we gathered around
then in turn all we kids would get in,
And with a stiff brush and some good yellow soap
Mom would scrub off the dirt and the skin.
First came little sister, then wee brother Will,
then finally, my turn came around
And I'd jump in that tub to soak and to scrub,
in water quite muddy and brown.

Mom would stoke up the fire 'til the stove got quite hot
(of pneumonia she had a great fear)
As you stepped from the tub you were chilly in front
but toasted well done in the rear.
Once, I gave a great howl as I stooped for the towel,
after that life was never the same.
For my poor little bottom was branded for life
with the stove manufacturer's name.

Now each Monday morning 'twas filled to the brim
and Mom gave our clothing a scrub,
And on Wednesday Dad mixed up the feed for the stock,
(you guessed it) in the old copper tub.
The rest of the time it hung in the shed
and at noon, to call Dad for his grub,
Mom would take down a paddle that hung on the wall
and beat on the old copper tub.

I remember so well the sping I was ten
and the stream by our house was in flood,
Little brother and I to go sailing did try
and we borrowed Mom's big copper tub.
So bravely we paddled out into the current,
not realizing that was a flub
'Cause from three miles away we walked home that day
and we carried the old copper tub.

Since I have grown up life has treated me well,
I have prospered, yes that is the truth.
But one thing I have learned is that good times or bad,
you will always remember your youth.
So when nostalgia strikes I like to think back
to when I was a carefree young cub,
How I took my bath on a Saturday night
by the stove, in a big copper tub.

When my folks passed away and we sold the home farm,
the tub was battered and starting to leak;
So we gave it away to the fellow next door,
not realizing it was an antique.
Now I have a fine home and the bathtub I own
is the latest in modern design.
Still, I sometimes think back to that old copper tub
and reflect how it should have been mine.

So a few days ago I went into town,
to an antique house known as The Hub;
Where for three hundred dollars, a bargain I'm sure,
I bought back the old copper tub.
Boy! my wife sure got mad, she yelled I'd been had,
chased me out of the house with a club.
Still, I won't grieve, 'til she's over her peeve
I'll just sleep 'neath the old copper tub.

© 1987 A. Lawrence Vaincourt

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