Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Our mother

put her dancing shoes into the case
red heels, stubbed out on earth floors
in makeshift ballrooms
skipped and sashayed into a corner.

She laid her blouses into the case
their sequin-shimmied necklines musky
with lipstick and lavender cologne.

She dropped her turquoise swimsuit in the case
wrapped tight around a letter and a photo.

Her wedding flowers floated into the case
on a breath of silk and cigars.

She stuffed her maternity dresses into the case
this frayed pink gingham and darned paisley blue.

White christening shawls, woollen booties, mittens,
bonnets, scarves, jumped higgledy-piggledy into the case.

She folded her jackets, autumn shades
of herringbone and tweed, into the case.

We shut our funeral weeds into the case
lilac petals, these veils

this blackout.

We took her dancing shoes out of the case
and she waltzed into the trees.


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