Dem Bones by Rachelle M. Parker

L’ottie stared down at dem bones, his bones. Woolen shreds of navy and light blue stuck
to one, glued with blood, dried. By the pile, a brass button, tarnished. The rest of him
missing, gone. L’ottie got as close as they would let her near dem bones, his bones. Held
at her elbow by a son, theirs. Her tears would not fall, clung. Just enough on her lashes to
weight them down, heavy. L’ottie put her hand in an apron pocket, deep. She pulled out a
square of cotton, yellowed, and headed up the path, dirt. To the cookhouse, supper.
Straight to the pot of soup, ham bone.

Rachelle M. Parker is a Callaloo Fellow. Her poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Peregrine, Creations Magazine, Mused – the BellaOnline Literary Review, The Path Magazine and Elohi Gadugi Journal. Her work has been featured in Poeming Pigeons’ anthology. Dr. Sue Walker named Rachelle the first-prize winner of the Pat Schneider Poetry Contest 2014. She is a Nassawadox-born, Brooklyn-bred girl.