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Pickpocket Poetry, Parisian

The poem on today's Writer's Almanac happens to be about pickpockets in France:

Trick of the Light
by Michelle Y. Burke

In France, the pickpockets
ask tourists to sign petitions
against social injustice,
then run their hands over
their intimate belongings,
gentle and needy as lovers.
It’s hard to judge them harshly,
such artistry.
Even the rush-hour crowd
hurrying toward the downtown C
parts for the woman in checkered spandex
twirling a hula-hoop about her waist
while standing on her head.
Dear unobservant god,
do not snuff us out.
We are beautiful and strange.

“Trick of the Light” by Michelle Y. Burke from Animal Purpose. © Ohio University Press, 2016.

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It's true, you have to admire the talent. We do not seem to have these skills in the US. I sometimes wonder why not.