HomeSouthern VoiceThe Haberdasher

The Haberdasher

by Lydia Ondrusek

He takes the hatband off,
unspools a Mississippi of black grosgrain;
too long alone in the dim back room, he talks.

Tells about learning to make hats, shape them to fit
people to whom it was important, a good hat.
A sign of who and what you were.

Tells how gents wore boaters once,
all summer, cool and shady.
“Punched the tops out when the season ended!”

I put my boater on, with its new black ribbon;
tip it to my grandfather,
watching from the past’s dusty mirror.
He raises his own black-banded boater
in salute to summer, and to me.

A good hat is important.

Lydia Ondrusek lives in Richardson, Texas, and often writes about Southern experiences and locations. She has had fiction and poetry published online and in print since 2008 in a diverse range of publications that include Flash Fiction Online and Falling Star Magazine. Follow her on Twitter @littlefluffycat.

Oh My Darling May I
St. Simons Island