GREY

Grey’s the hair color you can’t buy.
I tried. I urged my hairdresser to
change my entire head.
“Not possible”, he said
“although new grandmothers
often ask.”
 
It’s good perhaps
some things remain
beyond our grasp
Time’s provenance
to bestow
If we’re so
blessed.
 
My grey hair
like my mom’s
lifts from my brow
on just one side.
I’ve left it pale since
the February day
she died.

SHALIMAR

My mother's scent was hers alone
familiar from the start just like my own.
Shalimar and lipstick
salt air and steam irons
biege powder dusting her dressing table,
scattered sweaters, a turquoise negligee.

Once, invited to the Waldorf
for a DuPont dinner,
she spent a fortune on a formal dress.
Arrived in lace and pick satin
to face women clad in cocktail clothes.
Edna, ever the Indiana girl.
How many Manhattans did it take to kill 
those feelings?

After her death,
I asked Sister Jose Hobday
“Will I ever smell that scent again -
touch her soft white hair?”
So much of me left with her
I am my mother’s child.

Peaceful in all worlds,
Sister Hobday laid
her hand on mine
and smiled.