The cool carried outside in her hair. Split open by her walking,
the last of the house let go as the air of the morning is taken in.
She wonders what else is trapped in her hair,
hiding for years without her knowing.
The fingers of lovers she no longer sees,
a kiss on its crown from a grandfather who is gone,
the smell of a campfire in the mountains of North Carolina
where she canoed as a girl, the feel of the first time
she cut her hair like a boy for the summer, high in the barber’s chair,
the smell of the bristle brush as it passed her nose on its way
to her neck, excitement running through her legs.
All the places she ever went searching for herself.
So long with all she needs, thick with all she has to give.
Hold her hair close and smell it, and you may know her gypsy heart
as well as you ever will.
All works © 2017, Shelley Hesse. All Rights Reserved.