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Poem for Mildred: wherever you are.

Mildred It's been years since Our mad telephone romance But I think of you still

Our mad telephone romance That never materialized Because you lived downtown On Flood Street In the lower ninth ward And I lived uptown On Erato Street In the Calliope Project And as you and I both know If you lived in the Callope Project And got caught in the lower ninth ward It was seldom you came out of it alive

So our mad telephone romance continued And grew stronger Over the phone

And even after we left James Derham Junior High School And you went on to George Washington Carver Senior High And I went on to Booker T. Washington Senior High Our telephone romance continued

Mildred Do you still have the comic strips I drew of you every week? The comic strips in which I would involve you In all kinds of wild adventures That you and your family enjoyed so much Do you still keep them Tucked away in your Bible Or have they all been thrown away.

Remember how we almost Went to my high school prom together But your mother wouldn't let you go And to attend another one would have been Just a bit too much, she felt So I had to take someone else instead When I really wanted it to be you

And even after graduation When I joined the Air Force We continued to write

But then ... Suddenly ... Your letters began to slowly Decrease in number And I knew someone else had won you I knew that someone else Had made it to Flood Street And won your heart

And it wasn't until A good six years later Two years after I had been Discharged from the Air Force That I met that someone I was on the corner of St. Bernard and North Claiborne Avenue When I ran across you And you told me you were married And had two kids And I remember the man you were with Who you introduced as your husband Who looked to be much too old for you

I really thought That after that I had gotten over you, Mildred

But then Last year When I saw you on Canal Street I knew Something was still there As I stood speechless Not knowing what to say to you And there was so much I wanted to say To ask you But couldn't So we simply exchanged casual greetings And moved on

Mildred, It's been years since Our mad telephone romance But I think of you still Wherever you are today I want you to know that

And if by chance Somehow You should happen across this poem Mildred, Please ... Call me
COPYRIGHT 1993 African American Review
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Copyright 1993, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:Section 3: Sayings, Sermons, Tall Tales, and Lies - Contemporary Black Poetry; poem
Author:Jua, Chakula cha
Publication:African American Review
Date:Mar 22, 1993
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