lesson of falling leaves

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The Lesson of the Falling Leaves
Lucille Clifton

the leaves believe
such letting go is love
such love is faith
such faith is grace
such grace is god
i agree with the leaves.

wishes for sons

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Wishes for Sons
Lucille Clifton

i wish them cramps.
i wish them a strange town
and the last tampon.
i wish them no 7-11.
i wish them one week early
and wearing a white skirt.
i wish them one week late.
later i wish them hot flashes
and clots like you
wouldn’t believe. let the
flashes come when they
meet someone special.
let the clots come
when they want to.
let them think they have accepted
arrogance in the universe,
then bring them to gynecologists
not unlike themselves.

to my last period

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To My Last Period
Lucille Clifton

well, girl, goodbye,
after thirty-eight years.
thirty-eight years and you
never arrived
splendid in your red dress
without trouble for me
somewhere, somehow.

now it is done,
and i feel just like 
the grandmothers who,
after the hussy has gone,
sit holding her photograph
and sighing, wasn’t she
beautiful? wasn’t she beautiful?


Photo by MontyLov on Unsplash
 

celebrate with me

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Won’t You Celebrate with Me?
Lucille Clifton

won’t you celebrate with me
what i have shaped into
a kind of life? i had no model.
born in babylon
both nonwhite and woman
what did i see to be except myself?
i made it up
here on this bridge between
starshine and clay,
my one hand holding tight
my other hand; come celebrate
with me that everyday
something has tried to kill me
and has failed.

be mad

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Why Some People Be Mad at Me Sometimes
Lucille Clifton

they ask me to remember
but they want me to remember
their memories
and i keep on remembering
mine.
Photo by Fredy Jacob on Unsplash