Ice-Skating Lessons

Photo by Giovanni Adavelli

Ice-Skating Lessons  by Nancy Schatz Alton

One of the twelve truths I can explain is how her bangs*

wouldn’t feather the right way

her hairs always fell back to rest in a straight line

above brown glasses.

Her feather-light tresses fell straight down

her glasses made a gateway for her ears that always listened

for my reply

her mouth curving into want of my attention.

Her cheeks are frozen and full of childhood’s chubbiness

she never lost her baby fat to true adolescence

yet her hazelnut irises pierce every hour I breathe within.

She loved my sassy-cutting sarcasm, my bossiness.

She moves forward inside me

laces her skates around 11-year-old ankles.

I teach her to ice skate every January.


*Part of this first line might be from a poem. The line was used in an exercise at a poetry class led by Kelli Russell Agodon and Susan Rich, two amazing poets and teachers. I’m sorry that I can’t find the poem the line or idea is from…


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