Going On A Shopping Spree

Old ladies, dressed to kill!
Laughing, smiling, flashing gold crowned store bought teeth!
Greeting each other with cherry 'Good Mornings! '
Brown and black and yellow and tan
Grandma's
Aunts and
Mothers-in-law
Sisters-in-law
Sisters
Friends
Neighbors
Gray-haired and bewigged.
Feeling happy, making chatter,
Eating fried chicken and homemade cake.
Dragging arthritic legs, forgetting the pain,
Feeling happy - out together!
Combined ages older than Methuselah,
Their wisdom insurmountable.
Eight a.m. and traveling North, going to Lancaster, Pa.
On a shopping spree,
Feeling happy! Feeling Free!
Hiding money in sagging bosoms - in little home-made pouches...
Feeling secure when wrinkled fingers tucked them in place -
Fingers, with rings sparkling, antiqued and diamond clad;
Nails aglow in reds and pinks!
Little Miss Johnson holding a cigarette in grand fashion,
Blowing half made smoke rings through red rouged lips -
She, the fine lady in charge.
Miss Eva Crowel called upon to offer prayer - calls
On the Angel of the Lord to take us all safely there
And to ride with us on our return - a prayer, deep, sincere,
Heart-felt!
Her Amen, echoed, rippling soft in solemn accompaniment!
I feel like a child, wrapped in the bosom of their warmth...
I smile to myself and tell Miss Maelissia, sitting next to
Me, just how glad I am to be there, and mean it!

by Dorothy (Alves) Holmes

Comments (1)

Oppen's wording, imagery and structuring of his poems enforces a de-conventionalizing of perceptions. His motive throughout his work, the way he recombines subjects and objects to permeate a deeper, unpredictable and previously unapparent clarity, becomes vivid. Doren Robbins Read the entire essay, FACETS OF A LIMITED AND LIMITING CLARITY at dorenrobbins.com. Click under ESSAYS.