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Billy Collins

A Poem by Billy Collins: Flames

  Flames Smokey the Bear heads into the autumn woods with a red can of gasoline and a box of wooden matches. His ranger’s hat is cocked at a disturbing angle. His brown fur gleams under the high sun as ...

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A Poem by Billy Collins: Embrace

Embrace You know the parlor trick. wrap your arms around your own body and from the back it looks like someone is embracing you her hands grasping your shirt her fingernails teasing your neck from the front it is another ...

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A Poem by Billy Collins: Consolation

  Consolation How agreeable it is not to be touring Italy this summer, wandering her cities and ascending her torrid hilltowns. How much better to cruise these local, familiar streets, fully grasping the meaning of every roadsign and billboard and ...

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A Poem by Billy Collins: Child Development

Child Development As sure as prehistoric fish grew legs and sauntered off the beaches into forests working up some irregular verbs for their first conversation, so three-year-old children enter the phase of name-calling. Every day a new one arrives and ...

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A Poem by Billy Collins: Candle Hat

Candle Hat In most self-portraits it is the face that dominates: Cezanne is a pair of eyes swimming in brushstrokes, Van Gogh stares out of a halo of swirling darkness, Rembrant looks relieved as if he were taking a breather ...

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