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Clifton King Poems
Sestina to My Daughter, and My Daughter'...
My daughter was born in the morning, following the sun into my heart where I could not tell one from the other; where love, saved and hidden away
The garden is raucous with yellow and orange. I find a bench in the shade. Gravel pathways crunch beneath the crush of tourists. A muted mix of Italian, French, that proper King’s English
I stand at the coffee maker sleep still heavy in my eyes,
87 Rue Claude Monet
We wander the country roads of France, Paris to Normandy, chance upon a small hotel in Giverny,
The Nature of Love
I recall those hours we first roamed free in the valleys, across the plateaus of our bodies.
I spent the morning at our beach where the sky was a collage of confused clouds, the ocean dappled with just the thought
Questions For A Friend
Remember those sweet little waves in La Jolla Cove right in front of the tennis club; the security guard who stood on the beach, waved his arms
I want you this morning more than my next breath. I want the warmth of you next to me, around me.
Normandy, France today
San Francisco Bus Ride
Across the aisle from us, a big man, shirt open, his bare belly like a ripe melon in his lap; his hair wild, tangled
I don’t own a pair of Sunday shoes, leather tanned from the hide
— for Jimmy, Brian and Richard There were four of us: good Catholic boys. Our mothers sent us to church each Sunday
Father's Final Words
So this is what it all comes down to: the three of us, knee deep in the sea, hold hands like school children crossing the street. Small, indifferent
We Were There
We were there in The Haight, flowers in our hair, beads around our neck, doe eyed girls bared their breasts, brandished bras; boys, not yet men, burned draft cards, numbers in the devil’s lottery, political punishment for being born.
Comments about Clifton King
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)
Sestina to My Daughter, and My Daughter's Daughter
My daughter was born in the morning,
following the sun into my heart
where I could not tell one from the other;
where love, saved and hidden away
for months could now be set free.
She, mere minutes old when I knew
what every father before me knew;
what every sunrise means to the morning
sky; why men wage war to be free.
Then, in what seemed like a heart-
beat, the school bus pulled away
that first day destined for the other
side of the world, or the other
end of the galaxy, for all I knew.
For years my child took me away
from the ...