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POETRY TREES / Thomas McAfee Why is it we talk about trees, and more Trees, far beyond the North Alabama horizon, The oaks and, especially, the pines? Why not Red clay, the way it feels between toes Or the way it tastes to a baby? Forget that. Let's consider a wash tub, the old woman Bending over it, scrubbing with lye soap The thin, cotton clothes. The glamor of that, The strength, stronger than trees, trees waiting Always for God. Or, let's go on: an elderly Cow, a furious rooster, or yourself without shade. The Missouri Review · 7 CLAIMING LOST DANCES / Thomas McAfee I said to Aunt Edna, dead, You are attuned to the eyes of potatoes, Stars you can't name, your grandmother Speaking through snuff and her Wild, flour sack dress, those Faded, mythical flowers. Come back. Though you are dead And I am old, We could dance till the sweat Put us down— The way you wanted it, real, With your husband, Who went to bed at eight. 8 · The Missouri Review TO MISS X / Thomas McAfee If you're alive, so many of you, But you, especially, Who used to, years ago When I was a child, Slam out of the Methodist Church At Sunday noon if the preacher Went over the hour one minute, I address you. And who dyed your hair Black as could be. And who had your trysts Over chocolate sodas At the Haleyville Drug Store. Yes, with married men, While the powdered ladies Whispered. I love you. The Missouri Review · 9 ...


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