Peace be with you


Rachael Duane

We’ll tell our daughters what we wanted

was an extra layer of skin, to be fit around 

like the hand, instead of the glove. That we wanted 


to be warm, to be comparable to something 

other than seam or silhouette. That we were never

the veil but the heat of proximity to the veil 


that the face feels, just before his hand reaches for it. 

To feel ourselves both choosing and chosen — maybe

resurrect our mothers’ best statements, if any. 


But that outfit — was she even thinking? they’ll say.

(Noting, too, how our pants grow higher every day.) 

Hands behind our hips, we imagine our young daughters


into our bellies, wrapped inside a spandex hug. 

We are hoping to be the material of the future, 

to do what we can’t do — stay and stretch — at once.


Or, quietly, to feel like girls again, 

again more slender than. We’ll say we knew 

the awkward claim of leggings trying to be pants


and remember how we wanted

each other’s permission for comfort. To be naked 

in our bodies, but covered.