Ashley Anna McHugh

In Praise of the Light Bulb


            —After "GADGET DANCE, 1936"

Sunlight's fine, but give us lamps!
Switch or pull! That filament
in a glass bulb! On tradeshow ramps,
this soft-white 60-watted glint:

a GE girl in a wire frame
that's shaped to Edison's design,
and shiny cloth—Not quite the same
as light, we know, but it does fine.

Swell get-up. (But her thighs, high heels—!
After a miniskirt of screw,
the opaque bulb balloons and seals
her curls and lipstick out of view.)

Wives watching, we would like to say
that it's the workmanship we're ogling,
but her damn legs go all the way
down to the ground, and back. It's boggling.

We only see those calves. (Those shins!)
O! Praise the scientific minds
that give us all our modern sins!
Praise all the pleasures reason finds!