first

Standard

(for G.)

one day you just get lucky
and there in the alley behind your house
is a woman with a rake
scraping leaves out of crevices
and forming crisp piles
on the cement

she’s very pregnant
dress straining against the pull
of a baby eager to be born
her hair a mass of tied back braids

when she turns
you wave
and life is altered

there are scratch cakes
and the kind of laughter that makes you hurt
the sisterhood thing locks
that softness covering formidable steel girding
never anything to forgive

you watch each other unravel
repeatedly
reform
placidly lovely
or wild

you tell kind lies
about bad haircuts
and antiseptics truths
about all the rest

you both fall asleep sure
every damn night
that your backs are good and got

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About Julie Ayers

Seasoned apocaloptimist, keen admirer of well-placed words, fierce mama bear of extra special children, black belt hugger, and advocate for a fashion rebellion which elevates the most human of hearts to socially acceptable outerwear.

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