“I NEED to Do This”
We all followed Bonnie’s orders–
“We need the bathroom cleaner. And,”
she surveyed the room, top to bottom,
“the swiffer mop thing.”
We nodded and tiredly gathered her requested items.
We stood ready to get more, if needed,
watching her attack the toilet, the shower stall, sinks.
Seeming satisfied, she grabbed the mop,
assaulting the floor with a vengeance.
Little One quietly asked, “Why are you doing this, Bonnie?”
Without stopping, Bonnie said, “We need the money.”
I offered, “Not when we are all so tired and…”
“OKAY!” she raised her voice, stopping to look at us all.
“I can’t make anything right! I can’t make what we have gone through better!
But I can clean. I can keep you busy, myself busy!”
Voice spoke, saying, “WE don’t need to be busy! We hate this place!
We don’t want to be here where a dead woman was! We want to go home!”
Bonnie looked at him, at all of us, knowing he spoke the truth–for each of us.
Quietly, she said, “I refuse to be afraid, hide. I refuse to let you all, too.
This is my answer. It’s a job. You’re just helping.”
Mumbling, pleading, begging– “Please, let’s go now.”
Bonnie sets her shoulders, her face and jaw.
“I NEED TO DO THIS!”
We nod, silent.
If she needed to do it, we loved her enough to help her.
Maybe, just maybe, we all needed to do this.
We waited for her next orders.