She squats, bare feet
splayed out, not
graceful; skirt tucked around ankles.
Her face is lined and cracked.
She looks old,
older than anything.
Shes probably thirty.
Her hands also are lined and cracked
and awkward. Her hair concealed.
She prints with a stick, laboriously,
in the wet grey dirt,
frowning with anxiety.
Great big letters.
There. Its finished.
Her first word so far.
She never thought she could do this.
Not her.
This was for others.
She looks up, smiles
as is apologizing,
but shes not. Not this time. She did it right.
What does the mud say?
Her name. We cant read it.
But we can guess. Look at her face.
Joyful Flower? A Radiant One? Sun on Water?

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