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He Lives on the Landing
by Rhina P. Espaillat

He listens to the banister,
he reasons with the air;
he lives on the landing
of the north side stair.

Oblivious to the subway crowds
that stream and come and go,
he lives behind four bundles,
outside the flow.

He's fairly clean, considering;
he may be twenty-five.
There must be some who wonder
if he's still alive.

There may be one whose anguish
is more than mind can bear.
God keep her from the landing
of the north side stair.

("Orphic Lute")

The Shadow I Dress In, by Rhina P. Espaillat; David Robert Books, 2004;
(A division of WordTech Communications) 
The magazines in which these first appeared are listed in parentheses below each poem.

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