Friday, December 23, 2011

Holiday Poem O' Mine

Today one of my poems, which appeared in American Life in Poetry a few years back.
 
 
Grandpa Vogt's--1959
 
The food is on the table. Turkey tanned
to a cowboy boot luster, potatoes mashed
and mounded in a bowl whose lip is lined
with blue flowers linked by grey vines faded
from washing. Everyone’s heads have turned
to elongate the table’s view—a last supper twisted
toward a horizon where the Christmas tree, crowned
by a window, sets into itself half inclined.   
Each belly cries. Each pair of eyes admonished
by Aunt Photographer. Look up. You’re wined
and dined for the older folks who’ve pined
to see your faces, your lives, lightly framed
in this moment’s flash. Parents are moved,
press their children’s heads up from the table,
hide their hunger by rubbing lightly wrinkled
hands atop their laps. They’ll hold the image
as long as need be, seconds away from grace. 
 

7 comments:

Elephant's Eye said...

For a moment I'm sitting at that table with you. Ours is more - food is on the tables, and the family sit and eat in small groups. The one time of the year we see each other, without the virtual email or FB. May the year ahead fulfil your expectations.

debsgarden said...

This brings back memories! Merry christmas!

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

I remember that table but the photographer was dad...usually I was a the kid's table though. Merry Christmas.

Lea's menagerie said...

Merry Christmas and best wishes for the new year!
Lea

Mary said...

Beautiful.

James Golden said...

I love the poem. The words "linked by grey vines faded from washing" tells such a moving, long and complex story in a single image.

Benjamin Vogt said...

I'm glad you liked this poem everyone! Just got back in town from family pictures, not as tense as this one, which is a real photo.