Monday, August 9, 2010


a little nervous
i'll admit
to stand behind the market table and sell vegetables
like i do every week
but looking quite a bit different than
last time i stood here.

mostly, folks focus on the produce
like usual
but i get a few longer stares
some nearly imperceptible double takes
and a couple compliments, too.

my hair feels like an elephant in the room.
just a little.

when The Lady in Yellow
sails up to our stand
wheeled as usual by her dutiful son
she hobbles from chair to standing
supported by her cane and his watchful gaze
selecting beets and sorrel and rraaadeeesh.
but not too much, now:
I can't use so much anymore.
she focuses her attention on me, her voice
thick with kindness and an accent from another time,
another place.
Yer hair is short now. Cool for ze summer.
a matter of fact.
i smile. she is my favorite customer.
i worry if a couple weeks pass and she isn't here.
she is always disappointed if we run out of radishes.

after she pays she sits back in her chair,
a bit winded.
i wish her good day and she looks at me carefully.
Eet looks guute on you. Ze hair.

her sincerity stays with me
even after she's gone.