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Patricia Jabbeh Wesley on Metta Samá (Lydia Melvin)

On putting a book together:
During our little meeting, I struggled with her when she decided to kick out a few of the poems from the book because she felt that they made the book weaker and the book did not need them anyway. “Just because you have had these poems published in literary magazines doesn’t mean they all have to get into this book. They can wait for the next one,” Lydia stressed in that “hello, you getting me?” sort of way. I tell you, I was flabbergasted. I am an African woman, you hear me, and I am in every sense of the word, so when a younger sister claims that sort of authority with me, I kind of get a cultural shock. But I had a lot to learn, I tell you. Many of life’s lessons or the education we get does not come from professors paid to teach us, I have learned.
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