Chicken Lit

I spent Saturday afternoon with my cousin Anna. I credit Anna with introducing me to the blogging world. She’s been blogging for years and was the person I first went to with questions like “Who’s Stephanie Klein?” and “What’s a Pingback?”

So I introduced her to Poet’s House. Much to my disappointment, I realized my poetry will someday be shelved near their ceiling since my last name begins with My. Poetry isn’t the most popular medium to begin with, so can I really expect people to climb a shaky ladder to get to it? Even I was too acrophobic to take down Merrill.

After Poet’s House, Anna and I ate lunch at my favorite coffee shop in the West Village where she mistook Scott Speedman for a guy she went to high school with:


I love that the WB creates false intimacy. I’m a huge Felicity fan, and while I’m sure I never sat next to Scott Speedman in AP European, on Saturday I did expect him to make me a Dean and Deluca latte and/or bolster my self-esteem:

Maybe I’ll ark up at home and have a Felicity marathon since my Mac weather widget is predicting thunderstorms for the next 3 days:


It’s like I won at slots only what I won is suspended F train service.

Today it was my lucky lot to place the office lunch order. I hate being the lunch order person. I can never hear myself over the condiment chorus of “No mayo!” and “Hot Sauce on the side!” and today was even worse, because our purchase amount qualified us for free stuff. It was like being at the Chuckie Cheese prize counter without enough tickets. “Ooh get the mug!” and “No no we want the T-shirt!” Right. So we can pass it around and wear it on alternate days? In the end, we were shy $20 for the shirt.

Me: OK guys. We can’t get the tee-shirt.
Office: What? Get the tee-shirt!
Me: We can’t get the tee-shirt. Our order didn’t cost enough.
Woman on phone: You can have a free whole chicken.
Me: What?
Woman on phone: A whole chicken. You can have one.
Me: Guys, we can have a whole chicken.
Office: (silence)
Me: Guys?
Office: Can we get the tee-shirt?

I didn’t much need a free whole chicken when I just ordered a pulled pork sandwich described on the menu as “overflowing.”

I had high hopes the chicken would arrive like this chicken.png

but Ashley seemed not to care:


Today’s Trybecca reader Lunch Poem is by Hattie. I’ve refrained from offering constructive criticism because I want this site to be a safe space and I want to encourage poems to get written without the worry that they aren’t any good. But should I suggest just a smidgen? (The Bearded Whorl and I are going to G-chat on this later. He doesn’t know yet but I might post our conversation.) I’m receiving so many poems now that I’m having to select. How? I picked Hattie’s poem because of its specificity, how it moves from “shrink-wrap” into “God”, how she pays attenton to “skin behind the knees.” I got a real feeling from this poem. As a workshopper, I would suggest to her that she omit the last two lines. I think it has a stronger rhythm and close that way. And I would also take out “of a discarded life.” Read it aloud and let me know what you think. Thanks, Hattie!

I prefer the sound of Styrofoam
to the sound of Tupperware.
It doesn’t burp and I don’t have to take it home with me
I shop retail,
forgoing vintage shit that other people wore,
their armpits and the skin behind their knees
leaving sweaty imprints of a discarded life.
I can’t stand to save the whales
or the dolphins,
and would eat them
if they were shrink-wrapped in my supermarket.
I believe that God
isn’t a myth
because I see him every day.
He isn’t a she either, he told me so.
I don’t build glass houses
because I know that hail is coming

and when it does
yours will shatter and mine will stand.


One response to “Chicken Lit

  1. i like the inclusion of the “discarded life” phrase, it put a sepia-toned picture of a thrift store in my head that helped the poem’s descriptive nature.
    I agree about the last two lines.

    However I’m an advertising major, so maybe a post-grad who studies poetry may know better.

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