Carl Sandburg





Working Girls

The working girls in the morning are going to work—long lines of 
    them afoot amid the downtown stores and factories, thousands 
    with little brick-shaped lunches wrapped in newspapers under 
    their arms.	
Each morning as I move through this river of young-woman life I 
    feel a wonder about where it is all going, so many with a peach 
    bloom of young years on them and laughter of red lips and 
    memories in their eyes of dances the night before and plays and 
    walks.	
Green and gray streams run side by side in a river and so here are 
    always the others, those who have been over the way, the women 
    who know each one the end of life’s gamble for her, the meaning 
    and the clew, the how and the why of the dances and the arms 
    that passed around their waists and the fingers that played in their 
    hair.	
Faces go by written over: “I know it all, I know where the bloom 
    and the laughter go and I have memories,” and the feet of these 
    move slower and they have wisdom where the others have 
    beauty.	      
So the green and the gray move in the early morning on the downtown 
    streets.