Lucille Clifton (June 27, 1936 - February 13, 2010 / Baltimore, Maryland)
ask me to tell how it feels
remembering your mother's face
turned to water under the white words
of the man at the shoe store. ask me,
though she tells it better than i do,
not because of her charm
but because it never happened
no bully salesman swaggering,
no rage, no shame, none of it
i only remember buying you
your first grown up shoes
she smiles. ask me
how it feels.
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