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Plates From Fifteen Years Of Marriage

The dishes help tell the story.

First there were the Christian plates
The ones with the subtle crosses built into a floral pattern,
nothing obvious
but colorful enough to fill a dishwasher
as a welcome gift.

Then there was Pfaltzgraff in the Amalfi style
urbane with a hint of assertive color acknowledging
things had been made respectable
by the benefit of clergy

USA made china from a Texas thrift shop

Christmas china by Lenox preceded
by plastic ones on sale

And always the Corning Corelle wear from various Walmarts

The most important plate
was the one I broke
and did not understand
its emotional implications
a tidal wave of recrimination
that took two weeks to heal
with scars surfacing to this day

Finally, the subtle pattern we both like.

Why does Hollywood
so often make this marriage thing
look easy?

by Bill Grace

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