PoetryDispatch No. 292 | September 4, 2009
Karla Huston brings today’s ‘feminine mystique’ front and center/in your face with great style, gusto, talent-galore plus ‘attitude’—the kind that makes men smile, damn near worship, wish the world were filled with more women alive in just this way, words rolling off their tongue…sharp, sassy, sexy…with just enough grace and gravitas to help you make it through another night, romance, rancor, or reflection.. Say it again, please, one more time…it sounds so right. –Norbert Blei
The girl from Ipanema has nothing
on this one walking a suburban street,
short shorts and tan legs which my husband
says go all the way up to her (perfect!) ass.
What catches his eye more than the Y
of cleavage peeking out of her white top?
Is it her hair, long and thick?
It moves like a surge, a breaker picking
up momentum, the curl of it washing
the immaculate shore of her shoulders.
And I know he’s thinking how her hair
would feel, its blonde chill, all silk and sweet
sheets, satiny cool against his thighs until
everything is the only thing,
the deep waves of it rolling in and out,
the dry taste of salt.
Fifties Women at Windows
They wait at windows
in aprons and house dresses,
and pointed. They wait
at kitchen windows, soapy hands
plunged into Joy, a little
orange grease catching the edges
of their wrists. They wait for husbands
to get home, for children walking
down streets, for the delivery
with its boxes and butcher paper
wrapping what they can’t afford
this week. They wait at picture
windows while plows clear snow
into impossible rows. They wait
for neighbors and coffee,
the Jewel Tea man with his bag
of brushes and cleaners,
for the Avon lady to ding dong,
bring vials of To a Wild Rose,
tiny tubes of pastel pinks. They wait
for the knock of The Millionaire
offering a check to solve
what ails them. For once,
they want to be Queen for a Day—
or at least the idea of it. Not
the pitiful sobbing women
in the small window of the TV.
They wait for the window
of the world they knew to open
and take them back.
Love That Red
The mouths of their tubes open,
luscious tongues reaching.
I’m drawn to them – the thick
color embedded and shaped,
the sheen glistening,
the slanted tips fat with promise.
My mother wore Love That Red
and when she put it on, I knew
she was going further
than the clothesline
or the edge of our corner lot,
knew the way her lips pursed
that love it or not, red was her color,
the way it lit her brown eyes
and she was taking all of it with her.
[from AN INVENTORY OF LOST THINGS, Centennial Press, PO Box 170322, Milwaukee, WI, www.centennialpress.com]