November 17, 2009


by me

For my grandmother.

You are a worn photograph
creased lightly in the middle,
corners dog-eared, sepia-tinted
with age and memory. Your smile
is already yours, close-lipped,
ironic, rife with the particular strain
of wisdom only born of hard times,
though you are only seventeen.

Were it not for that smile you
would look your age,
dark eyes speaking—more than
your mouth could—of an untold
hope. Or is that just
the flash of the camera
reflected in your pupils?

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