Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Aloe Plant

When the sunblock - carefully put on my left cheek
stretching across my nose to my right like warrior paint
on some tiny tribe members- failed to do its duty,
my mom would turn to the green starfish plant
she kept on the counter in our playroom –
away from the sun’s stretching tentacles.

Snapping off a limb, she would recite the same
exhausted speech about valuing the skin we have -
aging truths and realities.  I always burned on
my face and my face only.  She squeezed out the
cool gel that still smells like summer, gingerly
applying it to my face, hot to the touch. 

I would always wonder about truths and realities. 
We had painted with zinc oxide, reapplying after
every swim, but I still burned, almost daily and only on my face. 
I also knew there would be the comforts of a prickly plant
and that plant would always be there.

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