Translated by Krystyna Steiger

The iron really loved his job. It was his passion, and he threw himself wholeheartedly into every task.

— I never miss a crease, — he thought, gliding around, titillated by his every movement.

The iron treated every article equally. Sheets, duvet covers, pillowcases, t-shirts . . . He loved to see them as they lay on the shelf in tidy little stacks, meticulously pressed. He was always meticulous; he led a predictable and uniform life. Until she showed up . . .

A brand new blouse.

— My God, an iron . . . – she thought, frightened. – Although, it was bound to happen . . . Only please, be gentle!

Gliding over the rose-colored silk, the iron was overwhelmed by a wave of intense tenderness. He was scared. He didn’t know what came over him, or why he was counting the days until she’d finally be washed again.

— Please, do a good job, — she pleaded, during their second time around.

— I’m v-v-very g-good, — the iron said, with a nervous stutter.

He was only barely aware of his subsequent actions, as though the sudden surge of emotion had blown his consciousness away. He was ablaze with love.

A minute later, there was a little brown heart glistening on the blouse, in the exact spot where people usually have theirs.

— It just had to leak right where it’s most visible . . . – the iron heard the housewife say in despair. – It was always such a dependable iron, and now look at the mess it’s made: it got overheated, and ruined such an expensive thing . . .

The pink blouse just lay there, in a swoon.