The post I tried in vain to post on Sunday

Mrs. G posts a poem every Thursday with a recipe for a slow cooker. We *heart* Mrs. G, although her Thursday posts make me feel slightly white trash, as I have never in my life used the term “slow cooker.” In my neck of the woods, we all have crockpots.

In fact, my mom’s avocado green crockpot is one of two items that my brother has said he wants from my parents’ estate. No furniture, no cars, nothing like that. He wants a quilt and the crockpot.

I found an identical avocado green crockpot at an auction last summer. I stood guard over it and bought it for one whole dollar, fully intending to give it to my brother – not so much to be kind, but to get him off of the idea of getting our mom’s.

Sadly, he had absolutely no interest in the pseudo crockpot. He only wants the real deal. Maybe this Christmas I’ll wrap up the pseudo crockpot and plop a tag on it like it’s from our mom. Then the real crock pot will be mine, all mine!

I know. Siblings fighting over a crockpot is pretty much a sure sign that somewhere in my lineage, somebody appeared on Cops. Without a shirt.

Trashy or no, I do still enjoy some of the finer things in life. This is one of my favorite poems of all time. I have it permanently bookmarked in a collection of ars poetica with a photo of me with David Cassidy, circa 1992. I can think of no greater compliment to a poem.

The Poem You Asked For

My poem would eat nothing.
I tried giving it water
but it said no,

worrying me.
Day after day,
I held it up to the light,

turning it over,
but it only pressed its lips
more tightly together.

It grew sullen, like a toad
through with being teased.
I offered it money,

my clothes, my car with a full tank.
But the poem stared at the floor.
Finally I cupped it in

my hands, and carried it gently
out into the soft air, into the
evening traffic, wondering how

to end things between us.
For now it had begun breathing,
putting on more and

more hard rings of flesh.
And the poem demanded the food,
it drank up all the water,

beat me and took my money,
tore the faded clothes
off my back,

said Shit,
and walked slowly away,
slicking its hair down.

Said it was going
over to your place.

Larry Levis

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