prompt 17 hour 17: how to talk about typewriters?

how to talk about typewriters?


telling kids I learned to type on a typewriter is a great way to boost my mood –

they never really know what that is

and I never really know how to describe it:

like a computer but not.

the mess of ink ribbons

white out

or starting over to get rid of

carbon paper smudges on “good copies”

of letters

or papers meant to be the cleanest, clearest version

of everything I knew.


not so much, really

when the daisy wheel letters stuck

to paper not quite thin enough to be onion skin.


believe me,

gratitude runs deep in me

for word processing.

I don’t know how my fore-writers did it:

all those pages with ink erasers and carbon paper.

I’d be in a straight jacket,

not writing at all.


© r. l. elke

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