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A lorgnette
Pronunciation Sound Clip

lorgnette (lorn-YET) noun

A pair of eyeglasses or opera glasses on a handle.

[From French, from lorgner (to have a furtive look), from Middle French lorgne (squinting).]

"But my detention and my massive stain,
And my distortion and my Calvary
I grind into a little light lorgnette
Most sly: to read man's inhumanity.
And I remark my Matter is not all."
From the poem "Riders to the Blood-red Wrath" Book: Selected Poems, 1963.

This week's guest wordsmith Rita Moe writes:

Gwendolyn Brooks (1917-2000), American poet, was the first African-American writer to win the Pulitzer Prize. Her poetry ranges from traditional rhyming and metered ballads and sonnets to the most experimental of free verse. She is known both as a documentarian of urban black life, particularly of Chicago's South Side, and as a protest poet. While she often wrote about people with the barest of educational opportunities, living restricted, unglamorous, often oppressive lives, her characters are vital and complex. Brooks's language, too, is pungent and vital; her vocabulary is dense, rich and precise, infusing her often ordinary subjects and characters with dignity and complexity.

(Rita Moe's poetry has been published in Water~Stone, Poet Lore, and other literary print journals and can be seen on-line at threecandles.org and thediagram.com. She has been chosen to participate in the 2003-2004 Loft Mentor Program and recently received her MFA in creative writing from Hamline University. She works full-time for an investment management firm. Anu Garg is traveling in Asia.)


The tears of strangers are only water. -Russian proverb

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