by Maxine Kumin

Page 8

I should really have explained about the swede. In the Northern states, that's what people call rutabagas and probably in New Jersey, nobody eats a rutabaga anyway. Why should you, you have all that asparagus, right? This is a little father poem called "Appetite."

I eat these
wild red raspberries
still warm from the sun
and smelling faintly of jewelweed
in memory of my father

tucking the napkin
under his chin and bending
over an ironstone bowl
of the bright drupelets
awash in cream

my father
with the sigh of a man
who has seen all and been redeemed
said time after time
as he lifted his spoon

men kill for this.

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