Thursday, April 10, 2008

To Sea

(Christine Hamm is someone else I'd like to keep an eye on. Salt Daughter at times was too much of the same thing, but I still really liked it.)

Snow White's Apple

by Christine Hamm

At eight my mother brings the turkey pot pie
to our table. I gauge the gleam in her eye.

She paces around the edges, touching each
of us on the shoulder. She refuses to sit down,

slips off to feed the animals. My father pours
glasses of milk, from the pink pitcher, passes

them to me and my brother. My brother and I
look at each other from across the table. He is

smaller than me; his chin barely reaches the
tabletop. He looks up. We can hear Mother's

footsteps in the room above us. She appears
to be dragging something. Anxiety wrinkles

waves into my brother's forehead. The plates
are huge, blue and white, covered with

oriental men carrying fish and women down
a mountain in baskets, castles built of

curlicues and children waving as if to warn
from the balconies. My father cuts into the pie.

The knife releases steam--it smells like love,
like fresh bread and garlic and cloves

and something else. My father passes slices
to my brother, to me. My brother watches me.

I will do it first. I lift up the fork and begin to eat.


(from Salt Daughter published by Little Poem Press, 2005.)

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