The old woman bends to her granddaughter’s empty bed and the springs can feel no difference in weight. The shrunken bones of age have hollowed, and she speaks in whistle tones. Her silver tinted flesh wrinkles with many layers; she tends to them like love letters: the envelopes of her skin are not meant for anyone’s fingers but her own. Tonight in the white light of the bathroom she scrubbed her face with creams, aloe lotions, and baby oils until her skin glistened like a polished flute. Now in the closed bedroom she rests her coarse hair on the pillow and tries to rub her fingers straight. The mouthpiece of sleep lies in the cotton stuffing of this pillow: she presses her wet lips down and inhales. By morning she will be breathing the tuned breath of eighty years again, but her skill will be wrapped in the film of her granddaughter’s dreams.
About the Author:
Anina Robb is a 42 years old poet and lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virgina with her husband and two neat kids. She earned a MFA from Sarah Lawrence College, and has poems published in Nebo, The White Pelican Review, Rivendell, The Red River Review, Blast Furnace, and oatmeal and Poetry. In 2013 her poems will appear in the journals Juked, Emerge, Main Street Rag, The 5-2, and Ascent Aspirations.