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Patricia Nelson

Patricia Nelson worked for many years with the “Activist” group of poets in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is working on a book about monsters and seers.

Why the Sybil Goes on Listening

Why do I go among this jostling
every day? This sway of need
as brazen as the yellow lilies.

Is there beauty in so many sorrows
asking to be given weight
and time if they are lucky? No.

Do I love the ones at risk? Never.
But I like it when the light and dark align
sometimes in fates and start to rhyme.

I’m glad small weeping voices
flow beside me until they are clear
and near enough to raise the gods.

I’m the servant: lower than a wish
for mercy. I’m the flowering marsh
that twists a flood toward pity.

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