Forks

Forks

by Katrina Carmichael

This time it starts with a dinner party
and the subtle discomforts such parties cause.
I tell a Margaret Thatcher joke to slice
the silence before the salads come. Stark lettuce
crunch: not too painful. But the bottom of the bowl,
where metal hits china, that hurts. The soup
is a relief: mild slurping meets my ears
gently. But the main course—steak! Oh the cutting,
the slicing, the serrated sawing as the biters
prepare! They hush, lift, maws spread for the gift
as molars graze light; the sharp piercing frightens me,
each ping as new as a note never struck. Teeth
on metal—that’s worst of all. First, one bites, then many,
a cacophony of sleek spit-laden scraping.
I stay still and mute, lips pinched, eyes squinched, I try
to shut my ears. I really try. But then—
the host (she scrapes the most) parts her red lips,
takes full grip and scrapes all four spokes on eight
teeth from top to tip, as the screech rips and rips—

“STOP! Stop scraping your teeth on those forks!

I stand and scream, my knees locked, my fork dropped.

 1195637forks

~ by mamazoombini on June 16, 2009.

One Response to “Forks”

  1. […] Forks […]

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