Jenn Habel

And Then, of Course, There’s Hope

At 7:30 p.m. on a Tuesday in April the doors
             to the Pikes Peak F & AM Lodge
on Prospect Street are open. Members of that
             Prince Hall Affiliated order smile
and nod as two doors south a woman says, “God,
             he’s unbearable,” then laughs.
The last sun slants her bared feet, free and rich
             as the gold for which the state’s
first Masons came; surely the owner of that blue
             hound on Custer will be home
soon, and it’s possible the group’s convened
             in the Counterpoint building
for some purpose other than to keep gays off
             the school board or city council.
I don’t know why another Monet tacked to some-
             one’s wall makes me think
the world will go on. Why one stunted daffodil
             outside a rental house and I’m
alive. The International Political Economy major
             had a question for last night’s
activist speaker: Given all the injustice she’d been
             discussing, how does she stay
hopeful? She threw her black rope of hair over one
             shoulder. My life’s pretty good,
she said. My kids and I laugh a lot. We like to dance.



“And Then, of Course, There’s Hope” first appeared in Mississippi Review web edition, 10.3.