The Color of Hair
(To Punkers in Scotland, '82)
Radiant with contempt
for me in my dull tan
Mackintosh, you jostle me
with your transistor radios
in Prince's street.
You annihilate my gray-porridge world
with your patent-leather
clad buttocks, scorning all I still hold
decent public behavior.
I try to smile at your spiky, red, green
yellow, jet-black hair,
your tragic arrogance,
your funny innocence and
shift my shopping bag in which I have
some soap, a washcloth, a notebook,
a few of those civilized, domestic
items you ridicule,
I am humiliated, it's true,
by age, by pain, by you.
Yet I know something you have yet to learn
Life has trapped us both
between yesterday and tomorrow.
It doesn't matter what color our hair is.