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Brenda Marie Osbey

these women know subtlety
sleight of hand
cane liquor
island songs
the poetry of soundlessness.

a man could get lost
in such a house as this
could lose his way
his grasp of the world
between the front room
and the crepe myrtle trees out back.

— Brenda Marie Osbey, from “In These Houses of Swift Easy Women,” The Made Thing: An Anthology of Contemporary Southern Poetry, ed. by Leon Stokesbury (University of Arkansas Press, 1987)

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