Victoria M. Johnson – Unwavering Blue Scarf

June 30, 2014 | By | 17 Replies More

Protects
her head from dust
as she cleans from room to room

Gathers
her hair from falling
as she embroiders delicate designs

Shields
her head from the sun
as she prunes her roses in the garden

Conceals
the hairnet she’s required to wear
as she stands for 8 hours at the cannery

Listens
to her singing from memory
as she makes tortillas, beans, and arroz con pollo

Holds
her permanent from losing shape
as she sleeps from a busy day

Pretends
her life will get easier
as she works and works and works

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Category: Knowing

Comments (17)

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  1. Anjali says:

    Captures the picture of a hardworking woman from dawn to the dusk vividly – and the blue scarf creates a striking image of a scarf that transforms each action by the holding and withholding!

  2. Anjali says:

    Thank you for sharing!

  3. Hello Anjali–
    Thank you for your lovely comments!
    Victoria–

  4. Parthenia says:

    Lovely the way your poem uses verbs to “work” through the lines, thus echoing her own working life. The title is wonderful! Thanks, Victoria.

  5. I loved this wonderful complex picture of such a simple accessory.

  6. The qualifying word in the title of this touching portrait perfectly ushers readers into the life of the wearer of the blue scarf. Each verb evokes a loving and perceptive image of a woman whose world is defined by hard work and unwavering care for others. Lovely!

  7. I love the actions of this scarf. It pulls vivid imagery as it plays many different roles, just as she does.

  8. Mary Orovan says:

    This poem is amazing! Covers:-)so much in a few lines — a large portion of the work of women throughout the world,, the lovely and the draining.. — it is realistic, poignant, and yet with overall dignity. And yes, joy..
    In some ways, reminds me of my poem, “Like her fine wine”, about wise aging women. (Your devise of the Blue scarf as connection works beautifully.) Brava, Mary
    (Have finally read my way through the fine work on our site.)

  9. Hi Mary–
    I like your acknowledging the work of women throughout the world in this poem. I’m pleased you enjoyed my piece and found some connections to your
    poem, “Like her fine wine”, about wise aging women.

    I read your poem and I found a lot to love about it. I left a comment for you.
    Victoria–

  10. Ariel says:

    Beautiful poem! I could imagine this woman in each stance, wearing her scarf and going about her day. The last line stance is realistic and heartbreaking.

  11. Two of my great grandmothers worked on the line in fruit packing companies and your poem made me think of them. Lovely. =)

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