Saturday, March 7, 2009

Your ol' lady

So there I was, standing there
with a babe strung over
my left arm and another in the oven
when you said you were going
on the road again. How long? Is all
I could manage to shove past
the stupid lump I could feel swelling
in the front of my throat. Three weeks,
maybe a month, no more than
a month and a half anyway,
you mumbled something like that
not meeting my eye. You turned on
the TV, conversation over so I made dinner,
sweet potatoes crackling in the pan,
rice, stewed beans. You ate
sitting in the Lazy Boy, eyes
never leaving the screen
like this was an ordinary day,
like the smoke in the kitchen
was some sort of incense
making everything holy,
like the bottom of that fry-pan
didn’t have your name on it now.

Rachel Westfall
March 7, 2009


Woman in a Window said...

You really got me in the end! Luckily without the fry pan! Fun! (and much pain too, I'm afraid.)

Marty said...

A heart wrenching post - sorry can't make you laugh commenting on this one...

Anonymous said...

we have seen both sides of this..

jozien said...

Rachel, you need to come out, to play in the snow.:)

Kyddryn said...

"Hey, hun, I know this new job was supposed to mean I was home more, and I know you have appointments, rehearsals, work you need to do, and I said I'd be there to watch the kid so you could do that stuff, but I'm going out of town every week for two to four days, and they're the days you needed me to be home, and you can't switch your plans to the days I will be home because I am not going to be home anyway since I made plans to go do this, that, or the other with people who aren't you and the kid, so you'll have to either skip it or figure something out. It's only writing, anyway, and I don't see why you can't do that at home - why do you have to go somewhere else? It's not quiet at Borders, either, so you might as well stay home. And do you have to be gone so long the two days a month you DO manage to leave me at home with the kid? Because it's not easy to get anything done when he's around and he always wants something to eat or drink or to play, and it's a pain in the ass, frankly..." could go on indefinitely, but I duct-taped its mouth shut. You're welcome.

Umm...come to think of it, I have eight or nine good skillets...hangin' out feelin' lonely in the kitchen. Hmm...

Love you, darlin', even when you paint such bleak, empathy-inducing pictures of frustration and despair.

Shade and Sweetwater,

Ravy said...

Oh my! lovely swallowed and stuffed feelings just festering to a head. Good stuff.

RachelW said...

WiaW, glad you saw the fun of it! It is a metaphorical fry-pan, of course...

Marty, yeah and thankfully not my true story, but probably someone's.

Robert, we have seen both sides. Your writing definitely inspired this but it wasn't a direct response, more like flipping the issue on its side, and I'm not entirely sure where this came from. But yes, you definitely got me thinking.

Jozien, you are so right!! :)

Kyddryn, I'm so sorry love... I didn't intend to unbottle all that for you, and now I want to come visit you, maybe bring a few of my skillets along for good measure. ;)

Ravy, you've nailed it! Stuffed and swallowed.

Kyddryn said...

Oh hun, same old, same old, you know? I was snorting and giggling when I typed that, anyway, because you know...? :-)

Come visit anyway, with or without cast iron accoutrements...I can learn to cook Canadian food and teach you how to speak Redneck (I'm practically a native speaker, now)... :-)

Shade and Sweetwater,

Mike_Mike said...

Hey beautiful: Why don't you serve him the bottom side of the fry pan? Or maybe that heavy-metal dutch oven, eh?

Maybe you and those beautiful children of yours would like to come over my place for dinner tonight (I will cook ;) and maybe we can go to the big hill that is full of snow and Just Chill Out and HOWL-Yip-yip with the coyotes??


Diane Vogel Ferri said...

Wow - this is exactly the type of poem I can relate to. Powerful.

RachelW said...

Diane, :)

Kyddryn, I'll be right over after my dinner date with the coyotes! ;)

Mike, we'll be there, toboggans in tow! :) Think I can get the car stuck out behind the bins? Or shall we save that particular adventure for another day? Not anticipating any out-of-town work, are you? ;)

Karen said...

Rachel - Have you ever seen a cartoon of someone hit with a frying pan? That's the picture I get at the end of this one. :-)

RachelW said...

Karen, the real thing! Have you seen Eating Raoul? I'm pretty sure there's a good frying pan scene in that movie, though it's been many years since I saw it.

Mike-mike said...

Dinner is with ME, Not the coyotes!
And please don't get the car stuck.

No-no out-of-town work (I give you my word ;) cause I hate it when a fry pan has replaced my hat. Hah!

Ciao-ciao, beautiful...

Karen said...

Right -- the drunk guy! Funny!

RachelW said...

Karen-- yeah that's the one. Funny in a macabre sort of way.

Mike-- regarding out-of-town work, I have it in writing now, hmmmm? ;) And yes, dinner was with you, not the coyotes, you distracted me with that promise of snowy hills and moons and coyotes howling. And Just Chilling Out. Damn... we forgot to do that last part!

christopher said...

One good twist deserves another. Thanks for this one Rachel.

The Affair's End

So when she left me
she just had to go. She nailed
it shut with an out
of town new boyfriend
to bring home, to show him off
to the husband well
timed after he got
the new girlfriend, exquisite
finish to her plan.

Mike-Mike said...

"Damn... we forgot to do that
last part!"-Yup-yup, we did.

The moon, the stars, the snow filled hills, and the wonderful coyotes in the chill of the night were there tonight...a lesson for others to absorb; to take in.

Well, Luna, Lupo, Zack (in spirit)and I had a very nice walk, run, sit and take in the night tonight.

The beauty of the night can't be enjoyed in the day.

Now, what was the original post about?

RachelW said...

Christopher, I'm glad to see you are writing, though your poem moved me in a sad sort of way.

Mike-mike, don't get lost in the telling, now!

Mike-Mike said...

I'm lost in my mind...from the fry pan to the fire!

Poetikat said...

The best - "like the smoke in the pan was some kind of incense" - this is fantastic!
Does she conk him on the head with the pan? Or just let him walk away?


RachelW said...

Mike-Mike, is that what happened last night??? Fire!

Kat, thanks! I like that bit best, too.