It was not long ago I wore
my hair in braids
like twisted rivers falling softly over my shoulders,
or smooth vines held in place with green satin ribbons.
No longer a child, I’m too old to wear braids now
too old to wear above-the-knee-wrap-around-silk-skirts and
form-fitted-knit-dresses that reveal every imperfect curve.
The young ones no longer look me in the eye or hip
perhaps the swing is gone, they see no use? though
I pay my taxes faithfully-feed-the-chickadees that flock the trees,
rub away enduring dust
cook a meal they hastily consume then with a tart shove, push themselves
away from the table.
They don’t see me walking the old dirt road
or the deep lines of my forehead covered in a hat made of spun llama
soft and supple as new lamb
To them life is a horse race.
my mother used to say wear your hair piled up high,
she liked it that way
but no, I’ll wear braids again at the end of the road when
the holy-bound dream is to die-young-of-old-age.