eyes of dread

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Forgive me, dear women who were fifty

Please accept my apologies
dear women who were fifty
when I was twenty
you women nurturing children in the world
when I so casually whirl my polished hair
crop top hiking up my iron-flat abdomen
Forgive me sweet ladies
you women who were fifty
when I was twenty
you women rising, thin-lidded and lined
as I saunter by your commuter wheels
nearly naked, fresh breasted and easy
Will you vindicate me
kind women who were fifty
when I was twenty
for the times I fluttered my wicked lashes and smiled coyly
at anyone, maybe your lover,
perhaps your husband
I pray you absolve me
good women who were fifty
when I was twenty
you women warriors scarred by life’s weaponry
if my flipping fingers and cheeky laughter
interrupt your seasoned reflection
your focus on work, on family, on meaning
on all I will not know
and can not know
until my car is stopped at a red light
and I watch myself saunter by
regretting how I never once thought of you

joy august ripsaw