The Head Towel
by Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach
A bruise, a plum, an amethyst:
Previous Home Next
it's all those purples now, and draws
your forehead up into itself, into a tight-
locked fist. This is how you show yourself
to me, all face and unchanged
habit. This is how I keep you static.
I used to dye your hair each month's
last Sunday, your natural shade at first,
and then with time from red to deeper
red, but it goes white so fast now,
I can't keep up. How to keep it
from turning in my hands?
Be grateful you have your father's,
you always said, forbidding I change
my untamed curls, running your fingers
through them, colorless, wild, but still
mine. How to give back what was given?
This is not remembering, but the way
I should remember—
flour dredged aubergines, the veined sky
as an electric storm stole our power,
and your face, mother, staring
through us both: it's all those purples
in the mirror, leaving us the other side
of what it is gone.