the garden of delight

for some
it is stone
bare smooth
as a buttock
into the crevasse
of the world

for some
it is extravagant
water   mouths wide
washing together
forever   for some
it is fire
for some air

and for some
certain only of the syllables
it is the element they
search their lives for


for them
it is a test

Lucille Clifton, “the garden of delight” from Quilting: Poems 1987-1990. Copyright © 1991 by Lucille Clifton. Reprinted with the permission of BOA Editions Ltd.,
Source: Blessing the Boats (BOA Editions, Ltd. , 2000)
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