Baby

B
Love Song No. 3 by Sonia Sanchez
Sonia Sanchez
1.
i'm crazy bout that chile but she gotta go.
she don't pay me no mind no mo. guess her
mama was right to put her out cuz she
couldn't do nothin wid her. but she been
mine so long. she been my heart so long
now she breakin it wid her bad habits.
always runnin like a machine out of control;
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O Ye Tongues by Anne Sexton
Anne Sexton
First Psalm

Let there be a God as large as a sunlamp to laugh his heat at you.

Let there be an earth with a form like a jigsaw and let it fit for all of ye.

Let there be the darkness of a darkroom out of the deep. A worm room.

Let there be a God who sees light at the end of a long thin pipe and lets it in.

Let God divide them in half.

Let God share his Hoodsie.

Let the waters divide so that God may wash his face in first light.
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40
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If-ing by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
If I had some small change
I’d buy me a mule,
Get on that mule and
Ride like a fool.

If I had some greenbacks
I’d buy me a Packard,
Fill it up with gas and
Drive that baby backward.
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Two-Part Inventions by Anne Winters
Anne Winters
ONE

The First Invention, ear laid to earth, is listening
to the fingerlength underground beings moving in segments
through tiny tunnels; one inch shrugs out another,
as bamboo climbs in segments, joint by green joint ...

Or an inexpressive mask that must travel
the world, uphill and down, always keeping its own
counsel, impelling  forwardfrom inward—
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Something in the Belly by Deena Metzger
Deena Metzger
I wanted to have a poem and I was pregnant. I was very thin. As if I’d lived on air. A poet must be able to live on air, but a mother must not attempt it. My mother wanted me to buy a set of matching pots, Wearever aluminum, like the ones she had. They were heavy and had well fitting lids so my suppers wouldn’t burn. My husband wanted me to give dinner parties. John F. Kennedy was running for office.

I sensed danger. Kennedy wasn’t against the Bomb or for nuclear disarmament. I joined SANE at its inception. Also Concerned Scientists. I spoke with Linus Pauling and encouraged my husband to help his partner organize Physicians for Social Responsibility.

There was a baby in my belly. I wanted to write poems. I had a crazy idea that a woman could write a real novel, the kind that shook the world. I hallucinated that a woman could be a poet, but she would have to be free. I couldn’t imagine that freedom for myself even though I could see it in Isla Negra when I followed Pablo Neruda. I could see it in the way he walked. Even if he were walking inside a dictatorship, among guns, soldiers and spies, there was nothing between him and his vision. Anything he saw, he was able to take into himself–there was no sight, no image, no vision to which he didn’t feel entitled. In his heart, everything–everything–belonged to him. Pablo Neruda was–more than anything–a poet, and so he was an entitled man.

I was a woman and entitled to nothing. I had nothing except a husband, a rented house, a set of pots, living room furniture, a frenzy of obligations, credit cards, anxious relatives, too many acquaintances, a gift of future diaper service, two telephones, no time to read, a plastic wrapped cookbook of recipes gleaned from the pages of the New York Times, and a hunger, a terrible hunger for the unimaginable, unlimited freedom of being a poet, and a baby in my belly.

I would have called Pablo long distance if I had the courage, if I had the ability to speak Spanish fluently, if we had ever talked about real things. But, what would a man know about a baby in the belly? And what did it matter if there were to be one poet more or less in the world when so many in his country were dying?

I woke up one morning and thought–I can’t have this child. My husband said, “You’ll have to get a job after it’s born so we can buy a house. You’ll need an advanced degree so you can do something.” I thought, I can’t. I have to write poems. My mother found a crib. Someone painted it white. A friend sent a pastel mobile with tame wood animals. I thought about blue curtains, making bedspreads, and abortions.

Pablo was silent. He was walking so far from me, I couldn’t hear him. My husband objected to donating more free medical care to the Black Panthers. I tried to make dolmades from scratch and located grape leaves preserved in brine at the Boys’ Market twenty miles away. I organized a write-in campaign for peace to challenge JFK. My husband thought it would be nice to have teatime with the children and romantic dinners by ourselves. The new formula bottles lined up on the sink like tiny bombs. The U.S. was pursuing over ground testing; I was afraid the radiation would cross the milk barrier. I had a poem in me howling for real life but no language to write in. The fog came in thick, flapping about my feet like blankets unraveling. I became afraid to have a daughter.

I called Pablo Neruda in the middle of the night as he walked underwater by Isla Negra. He moved like a dream porpoise. He seemed pregnant with words. They came out of his penis in long miraculous strings. The sea creatures quivered with joy. I said, “Pablo, I want to know how to bear the child in my belly onto this bed of uranium and I want to know if a woman can a be a poet.” He was large as a whale. He drank the sea and spouted it in glistening odes, black and shiny. I said, “I can’t have this child,” and he laughed as if he had never done anything but carry and birth children.
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Idling by Stanley Moss
Stanley Moss
There’s wondering, idle thoughts,
thinking over what was last said,
some poetry in my head
like traffic outside the window.
In my forgetful marrow, I consider
often lying words, like everything and all.
Nothing is another matter.
Nothing comes of everything and all.
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48
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The Oppressionists by Jayne Cortez
Jayne Cortez
Art
what do the art
suppressors
care about art
they jump on bandwagons
wallow in press clips
& stink up the planet
with their
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Munich, Winter 1973 (for Y.S.) by James Baldwin
James Baldwin
In a strange house,
a strange bed
in a strange town,
a very strange me
is waiting for you.

Now
it is very early in the morning.
The silence is loud.
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46
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Football Weather by Paul Carroll
Paul Carroll
As a kid I tried to coax its coming
By sleeping beneath light sheets
Weeks before
The funeral of the summer locusts in the yard;
Then when Granny peeled down the crucifix of
flypaper that dangled from the ceiling of the
kitchen
Magic wasn't needed any longer
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Oakland Blues by Ishmael Reed
Ishmael Reed
Well it's six o'clock in Oakland
and the sun is full of wine
I say, it's six o'clock in Oakland
and the sun is red with wine
We buried you this morning, baby
in the shadow of a vine

Well, they told you of the sickness
almost eighteen months ago
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Harold Arnett by Edgar Lee Masters
Edgar Lee Masters
I leaned against the mantel, sick, sick,
Thinking of my failure, looking into the abysm,
Weak from the noon-day heat.
A church bell sounded mournfully far away,
I heard the cry of a baby,
And the coughing of John Yarnell,
Bed-ridden, feverish, feverish, dying,
Then the violent voice of my wife:
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50
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The Complaints of the Poor by Robert Southey
Robert Southey
And wherefore do the Poor complain?
The rich man asked of me,—
Come walk abroad with me, I said
And I will answer thee.

Twas evening and the frozen streets
Were cheerless to behold,
And we were wrapt and coated well,
And yet we were a-cold.

We met an old bare-headed man,
His locks were few and white,
I ask'd him what he did abroad
In that cold winter's night:

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The Battle of Blenheim by Robert Southey
Robert Southey

It was a summer evening,
Old Kaspar's work was done,
And he before his cottage door
Was sitting in the sun,
And by him sported on the green
His little grandchild Wilhelmine.

She saw her brother Peterkin
Roll something large and round,
Which he beside the rivulet
In playing there had found;
He came to ask what he had found,
That was so large, and smooth, and round.

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The Armadillo by Elizabeth Bishop
Elizabeth Bishop
for Robert Lowell This is the time of year
when almost every night
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The Grauballe Man by Seamus Heaney
Seamus Heaney
As if he had been poured
in tar, he lies
on a pillow of turf
and seems to weep

the black river of himself.
The grain of his wrists
is like bog oak,
the ball of his heel
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Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney
Seamus Heaney
I sat all morning in the college sick bay
Counting bells knelling classes to a close.
At two o'clock our neighbours drove me home.

In the porch I met my father crying—
He had always taken funerals in his stride—
And Big Jim Evans saying it was a hard blow.

The baby cooed and laughed and rocked the pram
When I came in, and I was embarrassed
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Inheriting My Grandmother's Nightmare by Anne Stevenson
Anne Stevenson
Consider the adhesiveness of things
to the ghosts that prized them,
the "olden days" of birthday spoons
and silver napkin rings.
Too carelessly I opened
that velvet drawer of heirlooms.
There lay my grandmother's soul
begging under veils of tarnish to be brought back whole.

She who was always a climate in herself,
who refused to vanish
as the nineteen-hundreds grew older and louder,
and the wars worse,
and her grandchildren, bigger and ruder
in her daughter's house.
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Song for Baby-O, Unborn by Diane di Prima
Diane di Prima
Sweetheart
when you break thru
you’ll find
a poet here
not quite what one would choose.

I won’t promise
you’ll never go hungry
or that you won’t be sad
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Vain and Careless by Robert Graves
Robert Graves
Lady, lovely lady,
Careless and gay!
Once when a beggar called
She gave her child away.

The beggar took the baby,
Wrapped it in a shawl,
“Bring her back,” the lady said,
“Next time you call.”

Hard by lived a vain man,
So vain and so proud,
He walked on stilts
To be seen by the crowd.

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Son of Msippi by Henry Dumas
Henry Dumas
Up
from Msippi I grew.
(Bare walk and cane stalk
make a hungry belly talk.)
Up
from the river of death.
(Walk bare and stalk cane
make a hungry belly talk.)
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37
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Ravens Hiding in a Shoe by Robert Bly
Robert Bly
There is something men and women living in houses
Don’t understand. The old alchemists standing
Near their stoves hinted at it a thousand times.

Ravens at night hide in an old woman’s shoe.
A four-year-old speaks some ancient language.
We have lived our own death a thousand times.

Each sentence we speak to friends means the opposite
As well. Each time we say, “I trust in God,” it means
God has already abandoned us a thousand times.

Mothers again and again have knelt in church
In wartime asking God to protect their sons,
And their prayers were refused a thousand times.
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40
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Number Man by Carl Sandburg
Carl Sandburg
(for the ghost of Johann Sebastian Bach) He was born to wonder about numbers.

He balanced fives against tens
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vocabulary I by Robin Blaser
Robin Blaser
let me get the vocabulary of this song
right—the curious happiness of poetry—
the word materialism dropped by the way
side—its mereness of the other face of
spiritualism—just two notes to sing—
repetitious dualism—do—do—once in a while
one squawks louder than the other, baby
crows being weaned before the next batch—
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37
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Homes by Charlotte Anna Perkins Gilman
Charlotte Anna Perkins Gilman
A Sestina We are the smiling comfortable homes
With happy families enthroned therein,
Where baby souls are brought to meet the world,
Where women end their duties and desires,
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37
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Sonnet. To Tell the Truth by Alicia Ostriker
Alicia Ostriker
To tell the truth, those brick Housing Authority buildings
For whose loveliness no soul had planned,
Like random dominoes stood, worn out and facing each other,
Creating the enclosure that was our home.

Long basement corridors connected one house to another
And had a special smell, from old bicycles and baby carriages
In the storage rooms. The elevators
Were used by kissing teenagers.
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49
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A Deserter by Charles Reznikoff
Charles Reznikoff
Their new landlord was a handsome man. On his rounds to
collect rent she became friendly.
Finally, she asked him in to have a cup of tea. After that he
came often.

Once his mouth jerked, and turning, she saw her husband in
the doorway.
She thought, One of the neighbors must have told him.
She smiled and opened her mouth to speak, but could say
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40
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from Each in a Place Apart by James McMichael
James McMichael
I know I’ll lose her.
One of us will decide. Linda will say she can’t
do this anymore or I’ll say I can’t. Confused
only about how long to stay, we’ll meet and close it up.
She won’t let me hold her. I won’t care that my
eyes still work, that I can lift myself past staring.
Nothing from her will reach me after that.
I’ll drive back to them, their low white T-shaped house
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61
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An Argument by Stanley Moss
Stanley Moss
When you said that you wanted to be useful
as the days of the week, I said, “God bless you.”
Then you said you would not trade our Mondays,
useful for two thousand years,
for the Seven Wonders of the ancient world.
I said, “Endless are the wonders
to which I can only say ‘ah,’ that our ‘Ah’
who art in heaven can easily become the
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40
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The Bachelor’s Soliloquy by Edgar Albert Guest
Edgar Albert Guest
To wed, or not to wed; that is the question;
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The bills and house rent of a wedded fortune,
Or to say “nit” when she proposes,
And by declining cut her. To wed; to smoke
No more; And have a wife at home to mend
The holes in socks and shirts
And underwear and so forth. ’Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To wed for life;
To wed; perchance to fight; ay, there’s the rub;
For in that married life what fights may come,
When we have honeymooning ceased
Must give us pause; there’s the respect
That makes the joy of single life.
For who would bear her mother’s scornful tongue,
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Ballad of Birmingham by Dudley Randall
Dudley Randall
(On the bombing of a church in Birmingham, Alabama, 1963) “Mother dear, may I go downtown
Instead of out to play,
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Countrywomen by Katherine Mansfield
Katherine Mansfield
These be two
Country women.
What a size!
Great big arms
And round red faces;
Big substantial
Sit down places;
Great big bosoms firm as cheese
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Cui Bono by Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle
What is Hope? A smiling rainbow
Children follow through the wet;
’Tis not here, still yonder, yonder:
Never urchin found it yet.

What is Life? A thawing iceboard
On a sea with sunny shore;—
Gay we sail; it melts beneath us;
We are sunk, and seen no more.

What is Man? A foolish baby,
Vainly strives, and fights, and frets;
Demanding all, deserving nothing;—
One small grave is what he gets.
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45
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Danse Russe by William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams
If I when my wife is sleeping
and the baby and Kathleen
are sleeping
and the sun is a flame-white disc
in silken mists
above shining trees,—
if I in my north room
dance naked, grotesquely
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41
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Day-Old Bargain by Hilda Raz
Hilda Raz
Bargain tarts, raspberry, goose,
he said, don't write about that
surgery, women who have hacked off write
all parts and natures of women
who lose food in the bottom parts
of refrigerators, onions, scallions,
sour tomatoes, tiny cocktail weenies
lost in the airless dark write
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50
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“The Dreadful Has Already Happened” by Mark Strand
Mark Strand
The relatives are leaning over, staring expectantly.
They moisten their lips with their tongues. I can feel
them urging me on. I hold the baby in the air.
Heaps of broken bottles glitter in the sun.

A small band is playing old fashioned marches.
My mother is keeping time by stamping her foot.
My father is kissing a woman who keeps waving
to somebody else. There are palm trees.
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For the young who want to by Marge Piercy
Marge Piercy
Talent is what they say
you have after the novel
is published and favorably
reviewed. Beforehand what
you have is a tedious
delusion, a hobby like knitting.

Work is what you have done
after the play is produced
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The house was just twinkling in the moon light by Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein
Highlight Actions Enable or disable annotations
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It Follows by Ruth Stone
Ruth Stone
If you had a lot of money
(by some coincidence
you’re at the Nassau Inn in Princeton
getting a whiff of class)
and you just noticed two days ago
that your face has fallen,
but you don’t believe it,
so every time you look in the glass
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46
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Janet Waking by John Crowe Ransom
John Crowe Ransom
Beautifully Janet slept
Till it was deeply morning. She woke then
And thought about her dainty-feathered hen,
To see how it had kept.

One kiss she gave her mother,
Only a small one gave she to her daddy
Who would have kissed each curl of his shining baby;
No kiss at all for her brother.
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33
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The Little White Hearse by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Somebody’s baby was buried to-day—
The empty white hearse from the grave rumbled back,
And the morning somehow seemed less smiling and gay
As I paused on the walk while it crossed on its way,
And a shadow seemed drawn o’er the sun’s golden track.

Somebody’s baby was laid out to rest,
White as a snowdrop, and fair to behold,
And the soft little hands were crossed over the breast,
And those hands and the lips and the eyelids were pressed
With kisses as hot as the eyelids were cold.

Somebody saw it go out of her sight,
Under the coffin lid—out through the door;
Somebody finds only darkness and blight
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Lullaby by John Fuller
John Fuller
Sleep little baby, clean as a nut,
Your fingers uncurl and your eyes are shut.
Your life was ours, which is with you.
Go on your journey. We go too.

The bat is flying round the house
Like an umbrella turned into a mouse.
The moon is astonished and so are the sheep:
Their bells have come to send you to sleep.
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60
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My Life by Mark Strand
Mark Strand
The huge doll of my body
refuses to rise.
I am the toy of women.
My mother

would prop me up for her friends.
“Talk, talk,” she would beg.
I moved my mouth
but words did not come.
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41
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Nick and the Candlestick by Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath
I am a miner. The light burns blue.
Waxy stalactites
Drip and thicken, tears

The earthen womb
Exudes from its dead boredom.
Black bat airs

Wrap me, raggy shawls,
Cold homicides.
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44
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On the Loss of Energy (and Other Things) by June Jordan
June Jordan
no more the chicken and the egg come

one of them
before the other
both
be fadin (steady)
from the supersafeway/a&p/giant
circus

uh-huh
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40
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A Poet to His Baby Son by James Weldon Johnson
James Weldon Johnson
Tiny bit of humanity,
Blessed with your mother’s face,
And cursed with your father’s mind.

I say cursed with your father’s mind,
Because you can lie so long and so quietly on your back,
Playing with the dimpled big toe of your left foot,
And looking away,
Through the ceiling of the room, and beyond.
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The Spirit Is Too Blunt an Instrument by Anne Stevenson
Anne Stevenson
The spirit is too blunt an instrument
to have made this baby.
Nothing so unskilful as human passions
could have managed the intricate
exacting particulars: the tiny
blind bones with their manipulating tendons,
the knee and the knucklebones, the resilient
fine meshings of ganglia and vertebrae,
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48
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A Wasp Woman Visits a Black Junkie in Prison by Etheridge Knight
Etheridge Knight
After explanations and regulations, he
Walked warily in.
Black hair covered his chin, subscribing to
Villainous ideal.
“This can not be real,” he thought, “this is a
Classical mistake;
This is a cake baked with embarrassing icing;
Somebody’s got
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Writ on the Eve of My 32nd Birthday by Gregory Corso
Gregory Corso
a slow thoughtful spontaneous poem I am 32 years old
and finally I look my age, if not more.

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Wasps by Ho Xuan Huong
Ho Xuan Huong
Where are you wandering to, little fools
Come, big sister will teach you how to write verse
Itchy little wasps sucking rotting flowers
Horny baby lambkins butting gaps in the fence
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The Baby's Dance by Ann Taylor
Ann Taylor

DANCE little baby, dance up high,
Never mind baby, mother is by ;
Crow and caper, caper and crow,
There little baby, there you go ;
Up to the ceiling, down to the ground,
Backwards and forwards, round and round ;
Dance little baby, and mother shall sing,
With the merry coral, ding, ding, ding.

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Brass Spittoons by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
Clean the spittoons, boy.
Detroit,
Chicago,
Atlantic City,
Palm Beach.
Clean the spittoons.
The steam in hotel kitchens,
And the smoke in hotel lobbies,
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45
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The Cut by Ann Taylor
Ann Taylor
WELL, what's the matter ? there's a face
What ! has it cut a vein ?
And is it quite a shocking place ?
Come, let us look again.

I see it bleeds, but never mind
That tiny little drop ;
I don't believe you'll ever find
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Dedication for a Plot of Ground by William Carlos Williams
William Carlos Williams
This plot of ground
facing the waters of this inlet
is dedicated to the living presence of
Emily Dickinson Wellcome
who was born in England; married;
lost her husband and with
her five year old son
sailed for New York in a two-master;
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Goodnight by David Ferry
David Ferry
Lying in bed and waiting to find out
Whatever is going to happen: the window shade

Making its slightest sound as the night wind,
Outside, in the night, breathes quietly on it;

It is parental hovering over the infantile;
Something like that; it is like being a baby,

And over the sleep of the baby there is a father,
Or mother, breathing, hovering; the streetlight light
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Harlem Sweeties by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
Have you dug the spill
Of Sugar Hill?
Cast your gims
On this sepia thrill:
Brown sugar lassie,
Caramel treat,
Honey-gold baby
Sweet enough to eat.
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45
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In Memoriam A. H. H. OBIIT MDCCCXXXIII: 45 by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The baby new to earth and sky,
What time his tender palm is prest
Against the circle of the breast,
Has never thought that "this is I":

But as he grows he gathers much,
And learns the use of "I," and "me,"
And finds "I am not what I see,
And other than the things I touch."

So rounds he to a separate mind
From whence clear memory may begin,
As thro' the frame that binds him in
His isolation grows defined.

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In the Secular Night by Margaret Atwood
Margaret Atwood
In the secular night you wander around
alone in your house. It’s two-thirty.
Everyone has deserted you,
or this is your story;
you remember it from being sixteen,
when the others were out somewhere, having a good time,
or so you suspected,
and you had to baby-sit.
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38
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The Life of Lincoln West by Gwendolyn Brooks
Gwendolyn Brooks
Ugliest little boy
that everyone ever saw.
That is what everyone said.

Even to his mother it was apparent—
when the blue-aproned nurse came into the
northeast end of the maternity ward
bearing his squeals and plump bottom
looped up in a scant receiving blanket,
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93
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Little Brown Baby by Paul Laurence Dunbar
Paul Laurence Dunbar
Little brown baby wif spa'klin' eyes,
Come to yo' pappy an' set on his knee.
What you been doin', suh — makin' san' pies?
Look at dat bib — you's es du'ty ez me.
Look at dat mouf — dat's merlasses, I bet;
Come hyeah, Maria, an' wipe off his han's.
Bees gwine to ketch you an' eat you up yit,
Bein' so sticky an sweet — goodness lan's!
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Maternal by Gail Mazur
Gail Mazur
On the telephone, friends mistake us now
when we first say hello—not after.
And that oddly optimistic lilt
we share nourishes my hopes:
we do sound happy. . . .

Last night, in my dream’s crib,
a one-day infant girl.
I wasn’t totally unprepared—
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Morning After by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
I was so sick last night I
Didn’t hardly know my mind.
So sick last night I
Didn’t know my mind.
I drunk some bad licker that
Almost made me blind.

Had a dream last night I
Thought I was in hell.
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the mother by Gwendolyn Brooks
Gwendolyn Brooks
Abortions will not let you forget.
You remember the children you got that you did not get,
The damp small pulps with a little or with no hair,
The singers and workers that never handled the air.
You will never neglect or beat
Them, or silence or buy with a sweet.
You will never wind up the sucking-thumb
Or scuttle off ghosts that come.
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A Penitent Considers Another Coming of Mary by Gwendolyn Brooks
Gwendolyn Brooks
For Reverend Theodore Richardson If Mary came would Mary
Forgive, as Mothers may,
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38
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Pre-Text by Marie Ponsot
Marie Ponsot
(for Douglas, at one) Archaic, his gestures
hieratic, just like Caesar or Sappho
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36
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Protus by Robert Browning
Robert Browning
Among these latter busts we count by scores,
Half-emperors and quarter-emperors,
Each with his bay-leaf fillet, loose-thonged vest,
Loric and low-browed Gorgon on the breast,—
One loves a baby face, with violets there,
Violets instead of laurel in the hair,
As those were all the little locks could bear.
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Proust’s Madeleine by Kenneth Rexroth
Kenneth Rexroth
Somebody has given my
Baby daughter a box of
Old poker chips to play with.
Today she hands me one while
I am sitting with my tired
Brain at my desk. It is red.
On it is a picture of
An elk’s head and the letters
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Reuben Bright by Edwin Arlington Robinson
Edwin Arlington Robinson
Because he was a butcher and thereby
Did earn an honest living (and did right),
I would not have you think that Reuben Bright
Was any more a brute than you or I;
For when they told him that his wife must die,
He stared at them, and shook with grief and fright,
And cried like a great baby half that night,
And made the women cry to see him cry.

And after she was dead, and he had paid
The singers and the sexton and the rest,
He packed a lot of things that she had made
Most mournfully away in an old chest
Of hers, and put some chopped-up cedar boughs
In with them, and tore down the slaughter-house.
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That Child by David Wagoner
David Wagoner
That child was dangerous. That just-born
Newly washed and silent baby
Wrapped in deerskin and held warm
Against the side of its mother could understand
The language of birds and animals
Even when asleep. It knew why Bluejay
Was scolding the bushes, what Hawk was explaining
To the wind on the cliffside, what Bittern had found out
While standing alone in marsh grass. It knew
What the screams of Fox and the whistling of Otter
Were telling the forest. That child knew
The language of Fire
As it gnawed at sticks like Beaver
And what Water said all day and all night
At the creek's mouth. As its small fingers
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Visit to the Zoo by Babette Deutsch
Babette Deutsch
From routine that deafly eats away
Is it the soul with slavering morselling bites:
From howls torn
Out of hours that have no throats, when dawn creeps
Back to her cavern with the unborn day:
From great this, little that: the dust
Hissing beneath the bed:
The silence
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Sylvester’s Dying Bed by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes
I woke up this mornin’
’Bout half-past three.
All the womens in town
Was gathered round me.

Sweet gals was a-moanin’,
“Sylvester’s gonna die!”
And a hundred pretty mamas
Bowed their heads to cry.
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