Vox Populi

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Elizabeth Romero: Blue Willow

Cooking was something I learned to do well. This was

a chicken roasted golden; I carved the leg and thigh

huddled like a plump comma. The fork slipped.

The piece I had carved fell on the floor

while he held the plate; he liked things to go

smoothly. Frightened, I picked it up; I’ll take that one,

I said and hurried to carve more. No, you won’t,

he said. I never knew the answer to these things:

whether my obvious fear infuriated him or something else.

Suddenly he slammed the whole plate of food

down on the floor: chicken, rice, peas, bits of plate.

I don’t remember the sound. How about this, he said.

The dishes were a set, Blue Willow, a gift from my aunt;

I loved them. Now there is one less, I thought.

I don’t remember what happened then:

Not the children’s eyes, not the frozen silence of dinner,

Only that bits of plate kept appearing

When I swept, when I dusted, bits of plate

for weeks afterwards.

Copyright 2018 Elizabeth Romero

One comment on “Elizabeth Romero: Blue Willow

  1. Vox Populi
    January 22, 2022

    What a terrifying and sad poem. Those of us who grew up in violent homes recognize this scene.

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on January 25, 2018 by in Poetry, Social Justice and tagged , .

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