Jaw set
Brows coming together
Looking straight ahead while around her
Kids are squirming, tearing, jeering
She rubs her forehead, right above her nose, and closes her eyes
The gesture of acceptance
Out-numbered defeat

Head tilted to the side
Eyes squinted
Staring into a face that doesn’t believe in her worth, her rights, her existence
She crosses her arms, juts her hip, and taps her foot
The gesture of defiance
Disbelief that in this day and age

Mouth agape
Neck outstretched
Listening to advice and false promises yelled by witnesses to her body’s treachery
She swings her arms and shuffles forward
The gesture of persistence
Knowing pain is temporary

Afterwards, she sits still
Listening to the quiet sounds
Of trees swaying and not breaking
Her breathing deepens
Her arms raise to the sky
The gesture of triumph
Self determined

—Irma ©2018

2 thoughts on “Gestures

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