The End Has a Life of Its Own
by Mary Clare Leonard

After Seeing Figures, Colors First Fransje Killars Mass Moca

My memory--the fabric shop the cutting table,
_______________ the dusty choke of fabric bolts
Mom saying, don't forget, nose to end of arm for a yard!

not the neon pink stripes of this installation
_________not the green and black hearts,
_______________ marching in long lines of aqua poplin

not the textured lime lace
________not the mannequins
_______________ veiled in saffron silks

but this-- our sewing room
_______gingham and rickrack skirts
_______________ packs of Vogue and Simplicity

pinning the thin skin of patterns
______hearing the whirr of her 1927 Singer
_______________ and me, standing doll-still for fittings

Mom saying, Do it this way,
________be careful of how the fabric runs,
_______________ ________of the how of that

______________Be careful of plaids, they must line up
____________________________ be carefulcareful

Inside this old New England sewing mill
___________I see colors and figures first
but Mom's ghost demands
_______________Do it this way you must

I wrap my head in a scarf a busy plaid
_______of pink and purple red and green
tucking it inside my coat
______________but the ends have a life of their own

Illya's Honey Literary Journal

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