In the very top shelf of the wardrobe
I have several iconic handbags
from the seventies;
a soft lemon; a tan leather; embossed.
But have I a hat? I don’t know
if I kept a single one
from the days when hats were
the ‘in” thing. Though for nostalgia
and hoarding of memorabilia
I almost wish I had.
Looking back even further
Yep, year ‘fifty five’
a photograph with the in-laws.
Nan holds her cherished grand-daughter;
a child christening photo-op.
My dress has a seeping stain.
Need I tell you it was near (whisper)
her feeding time.
Oh, the hats.
Something like an upside down fruit
bowl with a wide sloping brim
makes Nan’s face look sterner
than stern. (Which she bloody well was.)
And being almost a recluse, it was most unusual
to have her accompany us that day.
Perhaps she felt a little less
revealed under that stern brim.
Yes, I too wore a hat;
a little shaped black; clapped close
over mid-skull and held in place
with a pearl tipped hat pin; minimal
for a hat even in those times.
Obviously I want
to show my curls,
so unusual for me.
(Like leaking milk, the curls;
another of the temporary changes
during child bearing years.)
But really I’m not a hat person.
Nan, I think, was.
I have few stories about hats.
But I’m about to raid the top wardrobe shelf
and check if I actually did keep the burgundy
robin hood with it’s small feather.
And talking of feathers,
I have a small fascinator
that I seek out from time to time.
I can hear Nan scoffing at that.
Benita H. Kape (c) 16.3.2022
A conversation about hats tonight. Thanks Mish. https://dversepoets.com/2022/03/15/poetics-leave-your-hat-on/ I got a little carried away when I started out thinking I could go nowhere with this. But that’s poetry. Meant to surprise us even as we write.