She is all bird wings and thistles
all deer toes and sand banks.
She is all hanging lampshades and fairies.
She is the edge of a cliff.
Her visitors are all men,
all myrrh and big books.
She always thinks of their wives
who were not taught about grace.
Boys will be boys, they say and
that sort of excuse
fills up so many buckets
which women will collect from wells
far from their homes.
Where her cliff meets the ocean,
women empty their buckets
down into that ocean river,
so the men cannot cross.
We are close, but not close enough. Wise
but not wise enough. Full,
but not full enough. Lost,
but not lost enough.
Don’t make me laugh, she says.
As distant buckets clatter,
men pray to her toenails,
while she lifts her veil from one eye.
For no one to see.
(First Published, Tiferet 2015)