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These Yet-to-Be-United States

June 03, 1990|MAYA ANGELOU | From "I Shall Not Be Moved: Poems" (Random House: $14.95; 64 pp.; 0-394-58618-2). Angelou, best known for her several volumes of autobiography, beginning with "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," also is a poet. This is her first collection since "And Still I Rise." She lives in Winston-Salem, N . C . 1990, Maya Angelou. Reprinted by permission of Random House

Tremors of your network

cause kings to disappear.

Your open mouth in anger

makes nations bow in fear.

Your bombs can change the seasons,

obliterate the spring.

What more do you long for?

Why are you suffering?

You control the human lives

in Rome and Timbuktu.

Lonely nomads wandering

owe Telstar to you.

Seas shift at your bidding,

your mushrooms fill the sky.

Why are you unhappy?

Why do your children cry?

They kneel alone in terror

with dread in every glance.

Their nights are threatened daily

by a grim inheritance.

You dwell in whitened castles

with deep and poisoned moats

and cannot hear the curses

which fill your children's throats.

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