Ask Me About Saturdays
by Dulcie Stone
        This book is dedicated to the unsung heroines of today's society
- the working wives and mothers who hold together home and
family with sweat and pain, humour and warmth, and silent tears.

Their daily lives are tragically similar.

Although names and places are fictional, the story as told is a
social document based on actual people and events.

`The Age' Melbourne. 28.5.92:

"It is difficult to see how an unskilled blue-collar worker
could maintain a family and a mortgage on a single wage in 1992.

This points to another social change that has taken place during
the 1970s, that of the two-income family. Generally the rise in
the number of working women is characterised as a sign of the
growing confidence of females. That is obviously part of it, but
it is clear now that it has also grown from economic necessity.

......Every economic term that is ever uttered by a politician
or a bureaucrat means something on the street and in the lounge
rooms and in the work places.

......Indeed, with the recession out of the way, they (our
unemployed and our underpaid) will become more evident."

Shaun Carney

                     Young Mother

                        I am young!
               I live, I breath.
               I work, I sleep,
               I work, I work.
               Let me -

               I am mother, I am wife;
               Let me live my own life,
               Give me something of my own,
               Let me be alone,
               Give me time to be myself,
               Let me be me.

               Must they take my inner me?
               Like cannibals, feasting eternally,
               they eat my flesh and drink my blood.
               Like rivers in full flood,
               they drown me in their sea.

               And I am gone.

               Will I ever be myself?
               (except in silence and in stealth,
               when I grab a moment,
               escape the torment
               for one brief second in a day,
               while they're all at play.)

               Is this what families are about?
               Are mothers always to be left out?
               Must we only scrub and clean
               and cook and sew and grow mean
               from loneliness and too much use,
               too much abuse?

               Am I being truly fair?
               Perhaps they really truly care,
               perhaps when they are grown
               the many countless seeds I've sown
               will bear sweet fruit,
               and they'll see Me.

               Why can't it happen yet?
               When I am young and not yet set
               in ways that sour and warp
               and twist me from my natural course?
               Why can't they leave part of me,
               while I am young?
               I am young!
               I live, I breath.
               I work, I work.
               see me now!
               While I am young
               let me -

It's like this - there are a lot of us out here. Working mums
working because that's the way it is. No work no pay. No pay, no
way the kids get fed nor the debts get paid.

For me, it's not too bad. Bill hasn't shot through on us, and
I'm not rearing no latch-key brood. But any seven days any time
of the year's much the same. I reckon others might have it
worse, or better. I wouldn't know. Us workers don't get no time
for fancy `communication' like you read about. If you got time
to read, that is.

If you're one of us, you'll know there's some things always the