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Two Poems by Norma Smith

BEFORE DAWN
It’s almost noon and
I hear the dove
bleating at my window
where I usually hear her
just before dawn
Has my neighbor bird
slept in? Did something
wake her late last night
after nesting?
Did she pour herself
a shot of rum—
Cuban or Nica—
to remind her
of her children
and old music
How she continues
to sing. How
she wakes us.


BELIEVE
In the rain. It seems to be
a new, a decent year so far
the one we’ve been praying for—
those of us who believe
in prayer or good strong thoughts
broadcast out the way we
used to broadcast seeds
for the kitchen garden or fields
of grain—wheat, corn, barley, rice—
a blessing that might feed us.


Norma Smith

Norma Smith was born in Detroit and grew up in Fresno, California. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Smith has worked as a journalist, social researcher, editor/writing coach, and as an events and conference organizer. Her work has been published in literary, scholarly, and political journals.

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