Woman’s Work

Sing of the woman
who wove baskets,
useful and treasured.

Sing of the woman
who coiled the clay,
smoothing the surface,
incising the spirals,
the patterns of play.

In the end
the baskets,
the pots
with their patterns
wait in the mound.

Here in the sun
we see their coils,
we climb over their spirals,
after the centuries
spiraled around the globe.

Lari Smith

On seeing a diorama of Mississippi Culture Indians (1200 A.D.), and then seeing great Indian mounds outside Natchez.