The Kitchen Failure

Oh I can cook up a poem,
but I'm hell with meatloaf.
Give me lovers
frozen and alone.
Give me the rituals of mythmaking
the verse-operas of Daedalus or thePhoenix
or some such “literary” other.
So staid I am in my claim
I don't know what to make of spices
or fruits and vegetables.
Indeed! what of the Bake-a-lite
or the rotisserie oven?
Do such things melt wings
and make their wearers crash to earth
in the human story of failure
redemption, striving?
Can I speak of frozen love
with the burning edges
of a piece of cinnamon toast?
Does heartache reside in a singed crumb?

What can be done with artichokes
that Neruda hasn't already done or Lagasse?
I find mine disposable, and my stomach
empties itself in agreement.
Unlike Pablo I do not think of love
beloved socialism or equality
when considering their flavor.
I merely think it is not a good idea
to cook food with the word 'choke' in the name.
That sad joke leaves a hollow space.
Who am I to laugh who can barely light an oven?
I who cannot prepare a simple dish
like tilapia and lemon butter
let alone reach the soul of such a thing.
Flavors of love and life I will never understand
no matter how thoroughly
correctly and painstakingly prepared
to satisfy appetite or god of appetite

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Comments (1)

Michael, What a phenomenal exposition that includes my favorite poets...ample humor and wit...keep up the good work....I think you could pare down some of your thoughts, given the context of what you're writing, Example: 'give me lovers frozen in aloneness'-the -ness throws me a bit....why not, give me lovers frozen alone...? just my initial thoughts. love your work, keep it up, friend. phillip