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Won’t You Celebrate With Me Poem

won’t you celebrate with me
what I have shaped into
a kind of life? I had no model
born in babylon
both nonwhite and woman
what did I see to be except myself?
i made it up
here on this bridge between
starshine and clay
my one hand holding tight
my other hand; come celebrate
with me that everyday
something has tried to kill me
and has failed

–Lucile Clifton, 2009


Lucille Clifton (June 27, 1936, Depew, New York – February 13, 2010, Baltimore, Maryland) was an African poet, writer, and educator from Buffalo, New York. From 1979 to 1985 she was Poet Laureate of Maryland. Frequent topics in her poetry include the celebration of her Afrikan heritage, women’s experience, and the female body.

She was also nominated twice for the Pulitzer Prize for poetry.

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