Wednesday, March 8, 2017

March 8: Women in My Life, Natasha Trethewey, "History Lesson"

I think of all the women who've made a huge difference in my life.  My mother, who always pushed me to do my best in everything.  My sisters, who have always looked out for me, even when I've stumbled a little.  My wife, who teaches me every day how to be a better man.  My daughter, who forces me every day to be a better father.  My best friends, who are all women and tell me that I'm their "best girlfriend."

On International Women's Day, Saint Marty shares a little history lesson from Natasha Trethewey, the 19th Poet Laureate of the United States.

History Lesson

by:  Natasha Trethewey

I am four in this photograph, standing   
on a wide strip of Mississippi beach,   
my hands on the flowered hips

of a bright bikini. My toes dig in,   
curl around wet sand. The sun cuts   
the rippling Gulf in flashes with each   

tidal rush. Minnows dart at my feet
glinting like switchblades. I am alone
except for my grandmother, other side   

of the camera, telling me how to pose.   
It is 1970, two years after they opened   
the rest of this beach to us,   

forty years since the photograph   
where she stood on a narrow plot   
of sand marked colored, smiling,

her hands on the flowered hips   
of a cotton meal-sack dress.

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