Voices on the Wind
by Beate Sigriddaughter
At forty-seven, Emily stopped coloring
her hair to dance floor platinum.
She wanted to witness her first gray.
She waited and waited. Then one day
the neon in the restroom at the office
hit two of her hairs just so. Yes. Gray.
She tried to cry. It wasn't convincing,
even to herself. Also, there was much
left to do to earn her living. Papers
to be filed, things to be typed.
She didn't feel the least bit different,
a little lonelier than usual perhaps.
Nobody cared if she cried or not.
She understood what she had
always known: Even for her
there would be no exception.
Sometime later politics
made everything irrelevant.
It no longer mattered if her belly
was flabby or her hair turned gray.
All that mattered was the fear in her
In autumn on the trail she noticed
even asters had gray hair.