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A Summer’s Dream - Poem by Elizabeth Bishop (Elizabeth Bishop)

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To the sagging wharf few ships could come. The population numbered two giants, an idiot, a dwarf, a gentle storekeeper asleep behind his counter, and our kind landlady— the dwarf was her dressmaker. The idiot could be beguiled by picking blackberries, but then threw them away. The shrunken seamstress smiled. By the sea, lying blue as a mackerel, our boarding house was streaked as though it had been crying. Extraordinary geraniums crowded the front windows, the floors glittered with assorted linoleums. Every night we listened for a horned owl. In the horned lamp flame, the wallpaper glistened. The giant with the stammer was the landlady’s son, grumbling on the stairs over an old grammar. He was morose, but she was cheerful. The bedroom was cold, the feather bed close. We were awakened in the dark by the somnambulist brook nearing the sea, still dreaming audibly. Elizabeth Bishop

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