Sunday, October 14, 2007

Tablecloths

Our tablecloths are like the clothing we wear
because our bodies and tables both seek warmth and comfort.

They are the wine of a thousand nights.
An eternity of roast potatoes and chicken.
Comfortable chairs. Smoke.

Songs, stories and newspapers.
One million coffee rings.
An ocean of tea.

You know how yours tastes when you wipe your mouth on it
because in a way you've always known.
Maybe it tastes like candles, gravy, a hint of garlic.
Perhaps it smells like your hair?

Stains on the fabric record our days.
Like an augury, they speak the language
of carrot juice and bread crumbs.

The poetry of breakfast.

But now we've spilled too much wine. Again.
Like a Rorschach of red on white, we stare in to look for a sign,
but it is moving, being pulled aslant.

My daughter is grabbing at the corner of the cloth to pull herself up.
She is trying to stand. She tugs my sleeve.

I look down from the table.

She is holding an apple.

She wants to tell me something.

9 comments:

Steve said...

I'm proud to post the first poem on the new site. It's been long overdue.

Bocephus said...

Very nice. I like this.

Seth said...

That was a good drum break.

Seth said...

Just curious: how might a tablecloth smell like hair?

dsc said...

are you setting us up for some tasteless crude response seth?

I refuse to bite.

Toby said...

Tablecloths after a good meal are like maps of new territories. And they are like snapshots of goofy children, running riot. This is a delightful poem. I like the moving part best.

Steve said...

seth: use your imagination

Seth said...

Steve:

I'll use my fist.

And your face.

Seth

Suzanne said...

This reminds me of Friday. We went out to Tossa de Mar with some friends and had a seafood paella at the foot of a castle tower.
The paella was heaving with prawns, mussells and clams. We broke the prawns open with our hands and scooped the yummy flesh out with our fingers. I ate every clam and every mussel with my fingers as well.
After the meal we all compared napkins to see who had the coolest designs tattoed on them with the juicy juice of the paella.