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 The old woman made mint
Candy for the children
Who'd bolt through her front door,
Silhouettes of the great blue

She sold ten-dollar potions From a half-lit kitchen.
Chinese boxes Furnished with fliers & sinkers.
Sassafras & lizard tongues.
They'd walk out Of the woods or drive in from cities, Clutching lovesick dollar bills At a side door that opened beside A chinaberry tree.
Did their eyes Doubt under Orion as voices Of the dead spoke? They carried Photos, locks of hair, nail clippings, & the first three words of a wish.

by Yusef Komunyakaa
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