Blues for Sweet Thing

August 3, 2017

Whose little girl am I?
Anyone who has money to buy.
What do they call me?

-Nina Simone, “Four Women”

I’m honeysuckle.
A girl child crying
holy seven sins.

A harp & loom.
A rack of ribs.
A ribcage.

A pocket of coins
never to be spent
because my country

no longer exists. Almanac,
without page numbers

or prophecy.
For you I was sycamore,

pear, willow,
maple & bougainvillea.

For you
I was bathwater.

Gazelle, artichoke,
tulip & daffodil.

Your father’s tears.

Blue fern of smoke
from a cigarette

opened by a fist
of summer rain.

For you
I was a red dress.

Rachel Eliza Griffiths

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