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Sore Fingers

written by: Lynn White

 

At night my long hair was wrapped
in rags - pristine strips
of thick white cloth.
Sore fingers, my mother called them.
My unruly curls bandaged
into six stiff sore fingers,
to be unravelled in the morning
to reveal
shiny ringlets
ready
to be tied in bunches
with broad, bright, bias cut ribbons.

I wanted plaits.
All the heroines
in my childhood
books had plaits
I dreamt about plaits
fantasised about plaits.
No more sore fingers.
I wanted plaits.

Sometimes I untied the ringlets,
to my mothers displeasure,
and made untidy, unsuccessful plaits.
Plaits would ruin my hair, my mother said.
Would spoil its natural curl,
destroy it
in some
way
never
specified.

I didn’t care.
I hated ringlets.
I hated sore fingers.
I wanted plaits.

Lynn White

Lynn White

Lynn White lives in north Wales. Her work is influenced by issues of social justice and events, places and people she has known or imagined. She is especially interested in exploring the boundaries of dream, fantasy and reality. Her poem 'A Rose For Gaza' was shortlisted for the Theatre Cloud 'War Poetry for Today' competition 2014. This and many other poems, have been published in recent anthologies including - Stacey Savage’s ‘We Are Poetry, an Anthology of Love poems’; Community Arts Ink’s ‘Reclaiming Our Voices’; Vagabond Press’s, ‘The Border Crossed Us’; ‘Degenerates - Voices For Peace’, ‘Civilised Beasts’ and ‘Vagabonds: Anthology of the Mad Ones’ from Weasel Press; ‘Alice In Wonderland’ by Silver Birch Press, and many rather excellenton line and print journals.
Lynn White

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