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Old Love

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When my aunt died,
my uncle raised his hands
like a prophet in the Bible.
“I've lost my girl,” he said,
“I've lost my girl,” over and over,
shaking his head.

I didn't know what to say,
where to look,
my quiet uncle raising his voice
to silence.

My aunt was eighty-seven.
“Listen,” my uncle said, sighing
like a tree alone at night,
“women know.
Every midnight on New Year's Eve,
when others sang
and laughed and hugged,
your aunt looked at me,
tears in her eyes.
Sixty years.
She knew.
One day, we'd kiss good-bye.”

Pat Mora, "Old Love" from Dizzy in Your Eyes. Copyright © 2010 by Pat Mora. Used by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Source: Dizzy in Your Eyes (Alfred A. Knopf, 2010)
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Old Love

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  • Born in El Paso, Texas,  poet, writer, former teacher, university administrator, museum director, and consultant, Pat Mora is a popular national speaker who promotes creativity, inclusivity and bookjoy. She is the author of many books of poetry and children's books. Her book, House of Houses (2008), is a family memoir told in the voices of ancestors. Her newest book of nonfiction is Zing! Seven Creativity Practices for Educators and Students (2010).

    Among her awards are honorary doctorates from North Carolina State University and SUNY Buffalo, an honorary membership in the American Library Association, a Civitella Ranieri Fellowship to write in Umbria, Italy, and a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Texas at El Paso. She was a recipient and judge of a Poetry Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a recipient and advisor of the Kellogg National Leadership Fellowships.

    Mora and her husband live in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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