Blue Dress on a Hanger, Second Take
Every so often, and you’re never sure why,
that hitch in the light that comes with the
passing of afternoon into evening
stirs something up. It’s a memory,
a picture of a girl as you
found her on a catalog page,
or was it in some book.
You’ve always seen her
plain as the sky
scrubbed in common sense. She
smiled like Miss-America-for-a-Day,
a girl who wrote songs,
wore her hair in waves and spice,
brimmed ripe with ingenuity.
Oh, you see her, even now.
Sometimes, you imagine you are her,
a regular mother of nature
with no children of your own.
Powder your face, grit your teeth,
and you shine just delicate and
Between your thumb and forefinger
lies all the difference allowable
in the kind of vulnerable you should look
and the kind of vulnerable you should be.
But this comes to you only every so often,
only those times when
blue fabric casts a shadow, as if in dance,
against a closed door.
You move through your house
turning on lamps,
staving off the passing of evening.
Joey Brown’s poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in a number of literary journals including Rhino, The Mid-America Poetry Review, The Dos Passos Review, Compass Rose, Pinyon, Clare, The Chaffin Journal, Quiddity, Front Range Review, storySouth, Freshwater, and The Florida Review. Her work has been nominated for The Pushcart Prize three times. In 2010, Mongrel Empire press published a collection of her poems titled Oklahomaography.
Joey holds an MA in Creative Writing and a PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Oklahoma. She is a writing professor and teaches writing workshops.