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Adelaide Crapsey

by Carl Sandburg, 1918

Among the bumble-bees in red-top hay, a freckled field of brown-eyed Susans dripping yellow leaves in July,
         I read your heart in a book.

 And your mouth of blue pansy—I know somewhere I have seen it rain-shattered.

 And I have seen a woman with her head flung between her naked knees, and her head held there listening to the sea, the great naked sea shouldering a load of salt.

 And the blue pansy mouth sang to the sea:
         Mother of God, I’m so little a thing,
         Let me sing longer,
         Only a little longer.

 And the sea shouldered its salt in long gray combers hauling new shapes on the beach sand.

Published in Cornhuskers

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