Dawn Revisited

By Rita Dove b. 1952 Rita Dove
Imagine you wake up
with a second chance: The blue jay
hawks his pretty wares
and the oak still stands, spreading
glorious shade. If you don't look back,

the future never happens.
How good to rise in sunlight,
in the prodigal smell of biscuits -
eggs and sausage on the grill.
The whole sky is yours

to write on, blown open
to a blank page. Come on,
shake a leg! You'll never know
who's down there, frying those eggs,
if you don't get up and see.

Rita Dove, "Dawn Revisited" from On the Bus With Rosa Parks. Copyright © 1999 by Rita Dove. Used by permission of the author and W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. This selection may not be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Source: On the Bus with Rosa Parks (W. W. Norton and Company, Inc., 1999)

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Poet Rita Dove b. 1952

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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