She and My Granddad

by David Huddle

My grandfather—who died in 1970—

the year Sexual Politics was published—

called objects—screwdrivers, blow torches, trucks

—and sometimes even abstractions—winter,

pain, time—by the singular feminine

pronoun—she or her. For instance he would say,

I reckon she's coming up on quitting time,

or (of a favorite hammer), I guess

she ain't nowhere to be found. Kate Millett,

asked about the future of the woman's movement,

said, How in the hell do I know? I don't run it,

to which Granddad—at war with Gradmama all

my life but drawn to women, always polite—

would have said, Yes ma'am, can't nobody run her.

please note: photo by John Vachon and found in Farm Security Information, Office of War Information Photograph Collection, Library Of Congress


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