LaVerne

Born during a thunderstorm, in a field

under the name of a Roman muse,

patroness of the ninth month of 

pregnancy, a name she never chose

to identify with, or liked.

She was brought into this world

with many siblings to protect her

from their mother’s wrath;

they would hide her in a closet,

and take the brunt of several beatings.

At sixteen she fell in love with

a man named Frank. He waited for her 

to grow up, away from the music and

dancing, in the driveway of her house.

When she turned eighteen, her father 

woke her to go to school, but she defied 

him, “No. I am going to marry Frank.”

And she did.

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