these things

this is my twelve day. 
this is my seven.
this is my feeling 
like i can't go on any longer.

this is my porcupine
poking the sky.
this is all there is 
that's left in the pie,

and this, well, 
this is what you get 
when you combine the one 
with the other but the one
won't work 
and the other won't cooperate.

this is the feeling that i wake up with 
every bonecold morning and this is the meaning 
of the book in your eye that i can't wrap my head around
and this is this and that is that and these are the things 
—the thin things—that we leave to our children 
and hope beyond hope that they will match up 
in a way that makes more sense than we can make, 
in a way that makes more sense than we have
or have ever had, it seems,

and the fire is under the pot
and the sky is in the pot
and the fire is in the sky
and it is boiling. 
it is not rolling yet 
but it still is not still 
and it still is not anything 
that we can call our own
and it is just 
in this way,
the way in which the trouble 
moves in the liquid 
from the bottom 
up the outside and 
down the inside 
to the bottom 
again and again 
and again until it’s all gone, 
until the pot is a hot dry mouth 
screaming at the sky and it cracks 
and bursts in the face of the kitchen 
and the kitchen will never sleep again.

the kitchen will always be open. 
the leaves will blow right in 
through the open door and
they will roast themselves 
slowly—so slowly—right there 
on the open floor.

The bread becomes the baker

(for Alice and Belinda....finally)

The bread becomes the baker

The baker does not exist
until bread-making begins.

Fingers are ropes.  Hands, 
lumps of mute flesh until

they touch the flour, until 
they form the loaves, until 

they roll the dough around 
and around, turning the planet.

The sun does not rise until 
the oven’s fire rubs the last

of the rest from the eyes
of the yeast and wakes it fully 

from its bed within the warmth, 
until the nascent crumb 

stretches, yawns and grows
upon the crest of the day

when the baker becomes the bread
and again ceases to exist.


(NaPoWriMo, Day 8)

I awake to the sound 
of more sirens—
firetruck and ambulance 
this time—the weather has calmed,
the city has not--and visions 
of spinach artichoke dip 
spreading on multi-grain bread 
with round, browned 
and caramelized slices 
of oven dried tomato--
red on green and 
green and white
on brown.

Sunday Supper, images from inside the industry

This week’s episode:

Fancy Fish.

The simple-ish one is a smoked side of salmon.  The rest are from a while back…five years ago?  Decorated poached salmon. I guess it’s what you would get if a fish-monger, a produce merchant and a florist had a devil-love-child.

I haven’t done anything quite that schmancy in quite a while.  It is not just like riding a bike.    I’m afraid I’ve lost most of my garnishing chops.