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Callaloo 23.1 (2000) 218-219

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What the Memory Predicts

For Alexis

Dawn Lundy Martin

Part 1: In the Family

It is the body.       Is       love.
But more. That the arched back.
Is space created.       Is memory.
Is when we gathered wood
and made particular its placement.
Is when through the heavy pine doors--
         were not closed.
I am willing.       I exhaust.

Because my lens has been wiped clean of muck and censure.
Because brush strokes fill my mouth.
Unable inside deep pyramid
the dig of these hands
pull from.
Wind shrill--wound tight.
What is errant. What like the wind
around trees, through leaves
blanket.       And onion fog.

How I--
I grasp the arm that leads.
Seeing what gloves carry.
As if the fingers bitten.
Could read yellow. [End Page 218]
Unpuzzle.       Plead.       Dream them.
She breathes what exists.
I know what senses from. I know the velocity.

Coarse (the bread)       beaded       fragrant (this field).
Yield, the voice mouths, yield.
And swallows as would the head of.
And swallows as would birds' eggs.

Dawn Lundy Martin is studying for the PhD degree in English literature at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has a Master's degree in English/creative writing from San Francisco State University. Dawn is working on her first collection of poems titled Other Americas.



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