for my Headmistress
A feisty nose-rush of amber,
you caught me off guard: stuck
as I was between the gate and the
wall. A sudden implosion; what heart
wouldn’t shake, stirred hot by loose
capillaries? I lean over, as conductors
do. Their white batons’ swirling: a
voltage of serenades to please older ears.
Pinching, what alternative is left? I
implore to my school Headmistress.
The concern in her eyes, almost violet,
very kind, always ringed, always old.
She smelled of lavender, too; the way
of seniors that I’ve taken a liking to,
one none other than I can fully
understand. By the time my head met the sink,
she had already unclogged it. I took the time to
wince my eyes, pricked with ten salted tears.
Only ten. No more were allowed, she said:
the triumphant mark of bravery. Past the
Calla flowers and into her gold office.
More lavender swathed my irony head
as I took my place among the novels,
the Vivaldi she kept in a leather chest
beside her desk. Turning my now carrion
coloured mouth towards her, we smile.
The last smile before the graduation into
another life. One where I’d meet her, one
autumn afternoon in the bakery where I worked.
Did she remember? That time I replaced
her sweetish office musk with metal, and
tissue? Word has it, the winter took her,
blessedly old that year. Beautifully scented
with the beloved fauna
my body so desperately
tried to conceal.
© Eve Redwater 2012