Daily Archives: April 3, 2021

Washing

If my skull was a bowl (holes plugged with mud),
it would hold more water than I use now
to wash my entire body, and all my
hair. Of course, there isn’t much of that left,
cut short, shaved in places, my neck so bare
and cold, leaving me shivering. This is
no baptism, no mikveh, no immersion.
This is a rough rag or paper towel dipped
and wrung out, rubbed against skin, and rinsed clear.
Lift the breasts and scrub beneath; the same for
folds of fat that were uncreased a year past.
Nape and neck; behind the ears; root of nose;
breastbone and bellybutton; crotch and crack.
At last, lather the scalp, eyes closed, hot rinse.