Monday, February 18, 2008

The Lessing Table

I received a note this morning from a woman named Allison asking for a copy of this poem. Allison, it's in my first book Lucky Wreck. (You'd be a dear to buy it if you'd like, but just in case that's out of your price range..and because I understand the need for a specific poem at a specific time..here you go!). This one is very near to my heart. I wrote in 2001 while at the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center. The last tercet is in italics, but for some reason I can't make that happen here.



The Lessing Table

The dinner table was too small
and that was obvious.
We had to buy smaller forks,
smaller chairs, stop talking.

You took the saltshakers
off. I decided I’d only make
soft foods so we wouldn’t have
to use knives anymore.

It kept on shrinking for days,
the butter taking over the dinner
plates, the green beans looking
longer and mean,

until it was just a thin slip
passed between us, a note
on blue-lined binder paper
in number two pencil:

Make the train wheels lock.
Make the mobile stop.
Do something, do something.