She was a lover of Yardley’s lavender soap
and purple double petunia’s
She washed floors in a blue house dress
laced with small flowers
and crocheted rugs from bailing twine
and plastic bread wrappers
I heard she had beautiful long brown hair
that inspired my grandfather to write her love letters
on birch bark
although by the time I knew her
her hair was short and gray
and she said auburn is the best hair color.
She played with children
beckoning them through the woods
to a magic circle of peace where she would walk,
her tall sturdy frame leading the way around the path,
and if you followed her, you knew you were safe.
Then one day in my pockets I found judgments about
her judging me.
Now, I ask, how many times have fear and judgment broken
the spell of love?
If there is a lesson here
it’s that I wish I had struggled
through the currents of white faced fear
to get to the other side
Just so I could have loved in time.