Unkempt as women at the edge
Of patience, wringing rough hands
In aprons of home-made sorrow.
Their teardrops large and green
With a hidden core of remonstration.
How they came to accept
What was unendurable.
Harsh as an east wind
And yet they stand
Renowned for toughness
As if that could be a consolation
Like the lie that what doesn’t kill you
Is a blessing.