This morning Writer's Almanac features a good friend, Luci Shaw. To open the in-box and hear her voice this early morning was a joy.
Not a color I've wanted to wear--too
innocently girlish, and I'm not innocent,
not a girl. But today the gnarled cherry trees
along Alabama Street are decked out
like bridesmaids--garlands in their hair,
nosegays in their hands--extravagant,
finally the big spring wedding to splurge,
and hang the cost. Each really wants to be
the bride so she can toss her bouquet until,
unaccustomed, the gutters choke
with pink confetti that flies up and whirls
in the wake of cars going west,
flirting shamelessly with teenage boys on
the crosswalks. The pale twisters,
the drifts of petals, call out to me, "Let go;
it's OK to be giddy, enchanted, flighty,
intoxicated with color. Drive straight
to the mall and buy yourself a pink Tee."
Now this old buck male says that Luci's "Pink" is a determinedly female poem. What's more, yesterday, for the first time this term, I wore corduroys because it's just now officially fall, and cold, and we're an entire gray winter from Ms. Shaw's sporty spring. Sorry, Luci, but this old man isn't about to run out and buy a cute little pink Tee for any reason--just wouldn't be me.
No matter. I love it--the poem that is, nature's gaudiness begging us not only to take note, but to change course altogether, to doll up on our own lives, to run out to the mall and hunt down some showy stuff ourselves quick-a-minute.
Maybe a new button-d0wn shirt. I'll check Eddie Bauer. Maybe even pink. Some guys wear it.