Young Wives and Mothers
by Elizabeth Southwood
When time stretched
endlessly, she’d found a dress with
a holly-green sash that showed off her lithe waist,
white pumps edged with matching polka dots.
“Lucky” clovers around a sweetheart neck
framed shadowed collar bones.
And mascara fringed her eyes.
rumpled and wrinkled, with wavy silver hair,
in a son’s outgrown midnight-blue sweats, she finds
old pictures of herself with friends
and sees their sparkling youth,
their untroubled eyes,
their confident eyes,
herself in her green and white dress,
in the courtyard at Allied Arts,
among beds of marigolds
and the sun gleaming in the spray
of the fountain.
And most of their tears unshed.