Thursday, January 29, 2009

Too Casual

[I believe I'll share this with the Monday Poetry Train Revisited. You should check them out.]

Too Casual

She said we were too casual, we Americans,
nearly always in jeans and t-shirts.
Her closet was full of silky saris
and soft salwar kameez, the cotton printed
with delightful patterns.
She stood graceful and polished
against our denim.

We were freshly-minted college students, bright
and confident that only an introduction
was needed to turn a stranger into a friend.
She said we were too forward, leaping
to given-name familiarity at the first meeting,
yet she was a friend by then, herself,
or she wouldn't have told us.

I looked at us through her eyes and saw
she was right. We were casual and forward.
We were racing toward degrees or away
from our pasts, testing the outlines of adulthood
as we tried the patience of our parents.

She was right. And yet, I was delighted
to be surrounded by intelligent women,
most of whom were also too casual,
too forward, and just an introduction away
from being my friends.


Sleepypete said...

We have a casual wear day on Fridays at work. We've never had a formal dress code but it was the "done thing" to wear suits for the men and smart stuff for the ladies.

The Dress Down Friday has made it open season :-) Which means I swap my shirt and tie for jeans and occasionally a subversive T shirt. (Or a normal T shirt at other times)

The younger members go with it but in the early days of DDF being adopted, you would see some real crazy eyed looks from the more traditional people :-)

sister AE said...

I hear you sleepypete!

Tumblewords: said...

Things change, don't they? And around the world they travel. Great poem - it speaks of many worlds all close at hand.

sister AE said...

Thanks, Sue.

SweetTalkingGuy said...

It's interesting how different people are across the world - I like the way that you put yourself into her shoes, so to speak!

sister AE said...

Thanks, Andy! Funny, I don't actually remember her shoes ;-)

But I can't remember what she said without remembering how she said it so maybe that's why it came out this way.

gel(Emerald Eyes) said...

I like the empathetic approach (Andy beat me to the pun "in her shoes".) Additionally, I enjoyed how you used repetition of certain words "casual, friends" to forge solid thoughts. I envision that circle of friendship.

sister AE said...

Thanks, gel!

Fledgling Poet said...

I loved the feeling I got when reading this...the incredibly important need we have to bond with other women is very clearly felt here. I liked that the poem was written casually and with an easy flow -- just like the relationships between the women! Great read. :~)

gautami tripathy said...

Like the way it goes..

dancing verses

gautami tripathy said...

BTW, I love your new template!

sister AE said...

Thanks, FP.

And thanks, Gautami (for both). I like the way the new template is lighter. And it makes me smile.

...deb said...

Forward, leaping. Super concept for a poem the mix of cultures, friendship.

sister AE said...

thanks, deb. the muse was good to me on this one.