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by Vernita Hall

petunias     sage     green, gold-edged stalks is snake

ice-on-the-mountain     butter moistens a cake

that’s chicken-in-a-basket     purple wanderin’ Jew

marry you a rich white doctor     mind what I tell you


for rice puddin’ and tater pies, use vanilla flavor

walnuts     peanuts     pecans     cashews my favorite

they ‘bout your color     ‘cept your cheeks are pink as a rose

we call those tough Brazil nuts niggahtoes


no rush on children     jus’ drop one or two

unless he rich     slow simmer tenders stew

keep your money in your bosom     know

your Granny loves you


fresh mint or lemon match good with a cup of tea

don’t you drag home no man     as black as me

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