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Poem - Flip Flop


This is a 2021 update. This post was created in 2010. It's one of my favourite poems and one of the most popular. I included it in my 2013 debut poetry collection, Caged Without Walls. I hope you like it. Please share if you can. I could do with the support.



It was windy though not cold.
She was grumpy but not mad.
She hung out the washing but it was not wet.
She put on the kettle but there was no plug.
She sighed but was not depressed.
She sat but was not tired.
It was getting dark but it was still day.

Her body ached but she was not old.
She wondered how her life had come to this but she did not care.
She had fought for liberation in her youth but she was not a feminist.
She had wanted to belong but she felt rejected.

She said she would never marry but she did.
She said she would never capitulate to a man but she begged him to love her.
She said she would sooner die than have children but she had four.
She had surrounded herself with family but felt alone.

She said she was a child of God but did not ascribe to a religion.
She felt like she was on trial but had committed no crime.
She had enough of it all but couldn't give up.
She began crying without feeling sad.

She didn't know what to do but was determined.
She let the tears fall though could have prevented them.
She stood up, though her legs ached.
And got on with her day.

She was a set of contradictions.
Like You and I.

More Poetry

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Next Post,

a new entry in Greatest Written Films,
and a short story, Ferris Wheel Frivolity.


  1. Fantastic Tony! a wonderfully thoughtful poem, I loved it x

  2. I really love this one Tony! :)

  3. I liked this one too - from a man who thinks poetry is usually written for... (I'll stop here before I insult anyone)

  4. I really like the pace and truth to this one. Just as I was approaching the last line, I was thinking "This could be anyone/everyone." Nice piece.

  5. :) u never dissapoint me
    i loved it...i havent written for awhile..ive been so busy
    uve inspired me to get back to it ;P

  6. Thanks for coming by - i really appreciate it.. the good ones seems to come out relatively straight forward.. its the crap ones that are the most difficult..


  7. yin yang
    black white
    good bad
    hot cold

  8. Dear Anthony

    I read your poem twice, and at each reading I got the same sense of a woman, numb with her every day existence.

    "She hung out the washing but it was not wet" gives me a sense of her on automaton, without thinking, just doing.

    The rythmn in this poem is quiet unique.

    In the first instance you paint a picture of a void, that spirals constantly, repeating like a vortex out of control. Her sense of detachment, "wanted to belong but felt rejected", is a very emotive point.

    You describe her simply going with the flow of life, rather than making distinctive decisions to achieving a different outcome. For as we all know, what we decide today, determines our future.

    In this poem, she has surrendered to her situation.

    I kind of feel sad for her, as she is so alone, caught up in her own thoughts, not realising that she has the ability to change her life for the better and to see that life need not be so constrained to her everyday mundane, yet important, existence.

    If she made another choice, she could change her life, to give her a sense of belonging, a sense of connecting with the community outside of her home and the life she knows.

    Isolation is a killer for some and unless she can allow herself to reach out and know that she is more than she believes she is, change and improvements can happen.

    Well done Anthony.
    You are inspirational.

    Ms G~

  9. Ms G, you make me blush.. Thank you so much for going into detail with your thoughts and opinion.. It's one of the nicest comments I've ever received..
    I think we all feel a little detached from our lives at times.. especially regarding the mundane, but she has also made some poor choices.. as you say, she could do something about it, but chooses to get on with it..perhaps for the sake of her family.. but isn't happy within herself..We are simple in our complexities..

    Thanks again. It's so nice of you to take the time.

  10. Anthony this could have been written about ME! I love my life, my family but somewhere in the business of it all I lost 'MY' blueprint for life and it really is no one else's fault by my own. Until recent days I stopped doing what it was that made me, ME! Now that I have made time to do what it is that I 'LOVE' that part of me lives again and I am better for it!! I too feel sad for the lady in this poem. I wish that she too loved herself enough to choose to live her life for herself, not just for others!!!
    Wonderfully written Anthony...loved it!!
    Hope all is going well with your new little family! Enjoy your Sunday!

  11. Congrats Anthony,
    For your very original and thoughtful poem.
    Keep up the good work. Karen T :))

  12. Okay, this one has actually brought me to tears, and not just a trickle... this is me! Well, it is me today! Tomorrow I might be back to a less hormonal self and happy again. But today your poem has mirror-imaged my life for a brief moment.
    Aggghhhh, I need to go to bed and hope I wake up in a better mood.

  13. Beautiful poetry! im following :) and thanks for your comment on my post. Yes, you were right it is true. lol and I know it may not have made much sense but, that was just the beginning of the "experience" lol Ill be posting the next part today :) thanks for reading! Great blog, I love all the poetry here.


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