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Callaloo 23.1 (2000) 125



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Living as a Lesbian at Forty-Five *

Cheryl Clarke

Part 1: In the Family

Oh, it's a frequent dream:
He (He?) comes home hot and
wanting too.
You're in your room and wanting too
but wanting to control and orchestrate
so you can get it without really
acknowledging it will have a past
this
one way or another
in concert or in solitude
late
your juices built up from the day
odors sanguine
in the mood to take yourself
you set your works and toys out
and him
even though he knows you're a lesbian
there are those times
he still loses his crotch
in the part of your ass through your dress.
And that's how it happens
and it doesn't happen just once
and you may have work like poetry
to do like now and it starts
making you
pay it
some attention
and you run
and get your accoutrements
in excessive solitude
and space ephemeral with wetness.

Cheryl Clarke, poet, is the author of Narratives: Poems in the Tradition of Black Women, Living as a Lesbian, Humid Pitch, and Experimental Love. She is currently working on a new collection, Corridors of Nostalgia.

* from Experimental Love (Firebrand, 1993). Reprinted by permission of the author.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-6512
Print ISSN
0161-2492
Pages
p. 125
Launched on MUSE
2000-02-01
Open Access
No
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