Monday, March 11, 2013


Following Frida

That mono-brow wouldn’t work today. 
Girls wax the in-betweens, the ups and 
downs, smooth, smooth. Sometimes, 
the greenery around the hacienda 
itches so much we sneeze and tickle, 
create unnecessary frowns, a slippage. 
There’s always Dr. Death, of course, 
his bright smile, that happy mouth 
inviting us to pout and make kiss shapes. 
Kiss, kiss! Kiss, kiss! he urges. His short needle 
makes cushions of our worries. Little prick here, 
another there, there, there
it’s all right darlings, growing old
needn’t hurt so badly

The hairs remind us, marching to link brow 
to brow, shadowing our lips. 
We want to be Frida, earnest with hair, 
mocking Dr. Death's short needle 
before it punctures our flesh. 
Old, old! we shout the words he hates, 
loose and old, not tight and old! 
Senses, raging, in need of colour 
as we behold ourselves, mirror-wise, 
the women we always were, 
just older, looser, still there.

by Mary O'Donnell
from The Ark Builders
Arc Publications, Todmorden, 2009


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