STILETTOS, Sreedhar Vinnakota

hidden-gardenHidden Garden, Romona Youngquist, 24 X 24, Oil



Remember the day you started
to first overreach, lifting
yourself on all fours, tugging

at your mom’s dress
to survey the world
on unbalanced feet, rising

on your toes, trying
to reach the cookie jar
on the top shelf, stretching

to clean the blackboard
and to cover yourself
in chalk-dust, puffing

with joy, when Ms. Nancy pinned
a badge of honour on your chest
asking if it pricked, sashaying

among awe-struck friends
attaching imagination to her
words, before understanding

your crush on the long-haired
girl three years your senior
with shared interests, exchanging

books, furtive glances, letting her
ruffle your hair, playfully approving
your coming of age, evolving

beliefs in the concept of soul
mates, notwithstanding the spasmodic
outbursts of paranoid parents.

Remember, then, to put this note away
from your daughter pestering you
to buy her first pair of stilettos.

Sreedhar Vinnakota

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