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Please cite all poem references: “Excerpt from ‘Suzie Bitner Was Afraid of the Drain’ by Barbara Vance.” Thank you!

Suzie Bitner Was Afraid of the Drain

Suzie Bitner was afraid of the drain, and so she never showered,
And consequently smelled like milk that was left too long—and soured.
“I simply won’t go near the tub,” she pinched her face and cried.
“The moment I turn the water on, it will suck me down inside!”

Her mother pleaded with her, but from bathing she abstained;
Her father, he implored her, but her stubbornness remained.
And so it came to pass that she grew dirtier by the day.
And all her friends stopped calling or coming by to play.

Suzie grew quite lonely in her slimy, smelly state
And finally thought her choice, she’d re-evaluate.
“Okay, okay, I’ll take a bath!” she sniffed through muddy tears;
And, bar of soap in shaking hand, she went to face her fears.

But the water felt so nice to her when steaming, piping hot
That all her dismal drainage dread, Suzie then forgot;
And never ever more was scared to climb into the tub
And give her little body a flawless, thorough scrub.

Now she washes till her skin has a pinkish sort of glow.
And everybody says that she’s the cleanest girl they know.

~ Barbara Vance

Excerpt from the poetry collection “Suzie Bitner Was Afraid of the Drain”

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