his hair brush my thigh; strokes
bright like citrus fruit flame orange red
i grab a handful
of it.  wrestling order out of chaos
easier than it seem.

Mama, the welfare lady, riot a’
doubt mute in the deep a’ the Pacific.

he fine. and when he say
we gon’ be okay i believe.

i braid; he drift in and out of his promises.
some nights he cain’t come home.
‘sides: the babies
is the nation.

some nights he wear wounds
and funk so we eat good, make love good, and
smile to show Them we good.

better’n good.

baby he say we fount it
a whisper all husky-like and i take
in the gifts of the garden
lingering on his breath; calloused hands
against my belly rubbing
me like a wishing tree so he
can believe too.


(Poet darlene anita scott is a regular contributor to the jonestown report. Her complete collection of writings and poetry for this site may be found here. She can be reached at darleneanitascott@gmail.com.)