Feast / Fast

by Marshall Gillson

I am twenty years old
and back home.
Gravy is dripping
from the ceiling.
Everyone is laughing.
It has been more
than a year
since we all cut
loose our misery
at the same time.
It feels so organic.
Eating is ritual,
how we rebuild
what has fallen.
And this table
smells like a cookie sheet,
like our family warm
and rising.

I am twenty years old
and eating wet
fish sticks
alone again
in this cracker crumb
My bed
is in my living room
in my dining room
in my kitchen.
I don’t need
to rise much.
Eating is just habit,
the least I can do
to not perish,
when I can manage it.
I am stale, rigid,
more worth discarding
and replacing.

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