May 022010

Jen Blair

Where do the wigs go while they wait.
Do they sit quietly at night, in a velvet box,
or are they kept on a high shelf til
the next re-enactment? How many
scalps do they varnish, passed helpless
as a child bride from head to head,
or do they only know the itchy kiss
of the one sweating skin?
Then are they properly brushed,
oiled and gleamed like horses tails,
ready to stream across the fields
in pursuit of freedom this morning?
Where do the wigs go after the silver
sharp bayonets rise above them like so
many stars in heaven, and their talc
mixes with the sharp cannon powder
an acceptable incense and offering
rising up, and they cannot help
but feel the sharp sweet pleasure
of being nothing but what they are,
highest ornament, most dire necessity.