Lady Jordan

By Denice Frohman
Photos by Meredith Minkow

It didn’t matter that I married the game
        or slept with a ball under my arm, Mom said
Girls don’t hoop, they wear hoops. And around here,
        vecinas chirped: it’s always “¿Y tú novio?” season. But beauty
is a finger roll. A backdoor cut on the blacktop. A fadeaway
       jump shot, two seconds left on the clock. So what mattered was Danny
talkin’ smack, even though his teeth were out of order. This isn’t the only history,
       but is the history of everything: the neighborhood boys
who shot crooked, never learned my name, so I played them
       Twenty-one, turned their ankles to jello,
made their backs kiss the floor, until they donned me
       Lady Jordan, and who wouldn’t take that. Though I’ve never been
ladylike, I wore that rusted metal rim like a ring,
        and slipped my bones through the net like a perfect white dress—