She frames her nature unto his howsoever Her pride is but to be cleanly,
and her thrift not to be prodigal.
Thomas Overbury (1614)
Another morning, the mirror catches her face
undressed, no solemn grace but the need
to be recognized as she wipes the glass
and smooths her white skin.
A candle flame slants toward the window.
The sky pale, the air seemingly stiff
like the collar and cuffs
of her dress, the cap that always
confines her long hair.
The garments lie folded on the bed;
strings waiting to be laced, a hemline
to be mended. Its fringe reminiscent
of pine needles that withstand the weight
of a crow. His wings outspread
like the robes of a Reverend
flung in prayer. Yet, the evergreen
does not sag. Its wild scent
grows stronger in the wind.
Carefully, She turns on bare feet
and looks at the cloth, concluding
that frayed edge should not be stitched.