Remembering Rosa

A poem by Rita Dove honors the late civil rights legend.

Published October 26, 2005 6:59PM (EDT)

In remembrance of civil rights legend Rosa Parks, Broadsheet wants to share this poem by Rita Dove, former U.S. poet laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner, from her book "On the Bus With Rosa Parks." Sometimes a poem is worth a thousand words.


How she sat there,
the time right inside a place
so wrong it was ready.

That trim name with
its dream of a bench
to rest on. Her sensible coat.

Doing nothing was the doing:
the clean flame of her gaze
carved by a camera flash.

How she stood up
when they bent down to retrieve
her purse. That courtesy.

Reprinted from "On the Bus With Rosa Parks" by Rita Dove. Copyright ) 1999 by Rita Dove. With permission of the publisher, W.W. Norton & Company Inc.

By Salon Staff

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