Warm Wool

in Verse

When I was a boy, my mother showed my sister
how to milk the sheep. Once she’d fastened
the ropes around the neck and feet, she stuck
her cheek in the pelvic crook, digging
her grayed black hair into the browned white wool.
The smell was stale, warm and sweet.

I ask you if nurturing is feminine, laughing
you say yes. But you are very feminine.

My head didn’t fit; my wrist on your hip—
shower water drizzled from your lips like laughter.
I dried lying on the bathmat between the sink
and the wall, and after I heard you really laughing.

With the steam rushing out into the cold and open, you
held your hair and wrapped a towel around your neck.
A drained, wrinkled grin dripped last drops right past me.

Go on then—baa your head off.

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