Her dry face I saw on a Byzantine icon.
Cracks and faded colors and a silent cry.
She shields her eyes from the sun.
They forecasted ninety-five degrees Fahrenheit.
Meaningless sounds, even if she understood English.
She’s dressed, just in case, in a jacket
and a black babushka
made by uncaring hands
in the Moldavian city of Tiraspol,
where languages fight and people die.
The sidewalk stretches for kilometers
from here to that big airport in New York
where she touched America for the first time.
She walked two hundred steps today facing east.
She stops next to a red sports car
to adjust her babushka
by its mirrored window.
The window reflects the bare sidewalk.
This first appeared in Midstream magazine