- The Women’s March
So many mothers are here, daughters and granddaughters. Mine’s been dead for nineteen years but somehow managed to come. I’m seeing her everywhere, in the pleased-with-itself smile of the little girl riding her father’s shoulders, holding a sign announcing girl power and the beginning of the Women’s Century, in the don’t-mess-with-me look of the much-pierced young woman in black who appears to have finally found her cadence, in the excited green/gray eyes of the old woman in a wheelchair being pushed along at quite a clip by, I assume, her grandson, who looks absolutely mesmerized. And just ahead is the forceful stride of the black drummer banging away for all she is and wants to be, using everything she has to make a point about strength and willfulness and sacrifice that maybe only women have the right to make, having made all of us, shared themselves so completely. A point about going too far and not far enough, about time, and the pain it brings, and yes, here I am, older than I ever intended to be, enjoying the ringing in my ears, remembering being lifted into the air by my mother, trembling with joy, as she enfolded me into the hospitable wings of her peasant apron. Yes, she’s here, marching with all the others, all of whom understand what’s being asked of them, one more time. [End Page 643]
philip schultz’s new collection of poems, Luxury, will be published by W. W. Norton in January 2018. He is the founder and director of The Writers Studio, a private writing school in Manhattan, Tucson, San Francisco, the Hudson Valley, and online.