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LOT'S WIFE 1988

each fo these weeds is a day

i climbed the stair

at 254 purdy street

and looked into a mirror

to see if i was really there

i was there. i am there

in the thousand days.

the weeds. and these weeds

were 11 hardwood place

that daddy bought expecting it

to hold our name forever

against the spin of the world

our name is spinning away in the wind

blowing across the vacant lots

of buffalo, new york,

that were my girlhood homes

sayles, i here them calling, sayles,

we thought we would live forever;

and i look back like lot's wife

wedded to her weeds and turn to something

surer than salt and write this, yes

i promise, yes we will.

Lucille Clifton