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Wedding Night in Arles, 1852
by Debbi Brody

I pivot in front of the mirror
not polished tin, real glass
swirl around in my good skirt,
until it lays askew over my
ready hips, as if I were a gypsy
girl instead of a milk maid,
hat off, pulse pounding.

In the garden across from this fine
guest house, my olive-skinned
wood cutter paces like a mute
somnambulist, waits for me to pull
closed the shutters, his sign to join me.

Lovely, best wedding gift, one night
on a goose down mattress, no bristly
flat thatch, feathers piled high.

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