I read my poetry at the holiday table
but this year was told explicitly, Don’t.
This year, Dad brought his own poem
by his favorite author, Mary Oliver.
So my father convenes my court
and opens Blue Horses. He reads
about yoga, being unable
to touch toes as Mary turns
into a lotus.
My sister breathes
for the first time in ten years,
This is the best Christmas ever!
It seems not everyone
enjoys tears at the table
or the blood of dead mothers
in their cranberry sauce.
I decide to forgive myself:
“Let the soft animal of my body
love what it loves”,
and curl up on the couch.
First publication: 4ink7, 2016