Winter 1993 • Vol. XV No. 1 Poetry |

leda 3: a personal note (re: visitations)

always pyrotechnics; stars spinning into phalluses of light, serpents promising sweetness, their forked tongues thick and erect, patriarchs of bird exposing themselves in the air. this skin is sick with loneliness. You want what a man wants, next time come as a man or don't come. the rough weight of it scarring its own back the dirt under the fingernails the bloody cock       love the thin line secting the belly the small gatherings gathered in sorrow or joy love the silences love the terrible noise love it all     love even the improbable foot     even the surprised and ungrateful eye

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Lucille Clifton was the first author to have two books of poetry chosen as finalists for the Pulitzer Prize, Good Woman: Poems and a Memoir, 1969-1980 (1987) and Next: New Poems (1987). Her collection Two-Headed Woman (1980) was also a Pulitzer nominee and won the Juniper Prize from the University of Massachusetts. She served as the state of Maryland's poet laureate from 1974 until 1985, and won the prestigious National Book Award for Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems, 1988-2000 (2000). In addition to her numerous poetry collections, she wrote many children's books. Clifton was a Distinguished Professor of Humanities at St. Mary's College of Maryland and a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.

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Them and Us

By Lucille Clifton

always pyrotechnics; stars spinning into phalluses of light, serpents promising sweetness, their forked tongues thick and erect, patriarchs of bird exposing themselves in the air. this skin is sick with […]

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