Watch me roll my sightless eyes!,
Uppity decreed at fifteen when her mother,
insisted, in her loving, dragon-lady way,
"you must wear your hair short,
blind girls aren't fairy tale princesses,
they can't take care of long, golden locks."
I don't want footmen, Prince Charming
or glass slippers, she cried, that's old school.
I want to inhale champagne, be tickled
by the feathers of a boa around my shoulders,
and swim in the silk tresses flowing down my back.
At 25, unfurling her cane, her own feather boa
tickling her, warming her, against the rough
wind of gum wrappers, manholes and stroller
wheels, Uppity stepped out on to the street.
The tempo of the cane's tapping protected
her from the icy staccato of the walkers
cold, icy stares. I'm Fred Astaire
dancing with my stick, putting on the Ritz,
Uppity told the god of blindness.
I'm the Braille Carrie Bradshaw.