If I Had It In Me, I’d Make a Grocery List Worthy of My Century
Organic chocolate nibs, star fruit in Ohio’s
January, or swirl of ancient grains.
If I had it in me, I’d write my list
worthy of maternal bloodline, chilled
glass rolling pin in motion, meals for
men whose fields stretch their bellies.
Descendent of a dinner bell still rung.
Inherited plates all washed within minutes.
What beautiful tablecloths I come from!
For now, all I can do is crack the last egg.
Wash a spoon. Find the crunchy peanut butter.
Oh, ancestral apron, I’m done pretending
as long as my table’s full. You might never
forgive me for this; I’m working on not caring.
Your tall oak icebox, first brought by horse
and wagon, fit perfectly into my hatchback Prius,
as if meant to see this house still betting
on three placemats. To hold, for now,
not milk jug or chicken legs, but shelves
of holiday cards, framed photos, new drawings
from the oldest nephew: what’s been searing enough,
this year, not to keep too close, not to throw away.
Didn’t I say?
There are wasps in that dinner bell
nearly every summer.
It’s the fifth year of my body’s empty field.
And I’m hungry all of the time.