Madrid, 1936

Women hold children in times of war;
fingers sore from their northern Gorgon childhoods,
soft under Gods glib brow -
and how,
as daughters of dead mothers they tied kerchiefs around their hair
to keep their girlhoods hidden underneath the guise of their leathery
destinies.
Hollow scalps, furrowed teeth,
and the baby wails,
cleft as any duffle filled with worldly goods,
and it's a journey none too few of us have taken,

women walking,
left alone,
mistaken.