The Gypsy Girl on the Champs-Élysées
Danielle Jones-Pruett

The Gypsy Girl on the Champs-Élysées

sat on concrete, even though it was raining,
and winter, and her eyes rolled back so only
the whites showed. The leg not hidden by her
rust-colored skirt was twisted like old rope.
The hand holding mine tugged me forward and,
looking up, I felt a spray of sympathy, she does it
for sympathy
, then Chanel No. 5, and bright lights,
and the scraping of hangers over metal rack-bones.
As my aunt joined the others circling the circles
of hissing fabric, I disappeared between the wool
coats, pulling them like hair curtains around me.
Squatting, making my skirt into a little bell, I hid
my two perfect legs.

Danielle Jones-Pruett

holds an MFA from the University of Massachusetts Boston. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Bateau Press, Beloit Poetry Journal, Salmagundi Magazine, and elsewhere. Danielle is program coordinator for the Writers House at Merrimack College, and works with Mass Poetry to create the Common Threads anthology each year.