Home for the Holidays

We're going to visit my family in Denver for the next few days, and on that topic, here's another poem by Philip Levine from a recent New Yorker (I found it, Brian!). I'm sure this violates a copyright or two, but I like to think that posting poetry is like sharing music files, and that if you like them maybe you'll go buy one of the poet's books and we can call it even. Home for the Holidays

Does anyone give a shit? Not

I, said the little brown mouse.

And so to bed, said Mother,

but no one was listening.

Praise the Lord, said the radio,

the radio said Praise the Lord

again, and the television

turned its back on the room.

Turnips for wisdom, eggplant

for beauty, parsnips for ease,

cabbage for size, a raw egg

for the hair, a slice of ham

to seize the hips, for the nose

foxglove and salt, for grace

ice-cold water poured from

way high up to way down low.

Everyone sits at the big table

in the dark. The empty plates

moon, the silverware stars,

the napkins scrub their hands.

I'm home, says the front door.

The windows are deep in thought,

the roof has taken off its hat.

Nothing to do, chants the toilet.