from Dinner Table (Conversations at the)

 

5.

 

because we say the table is a field

sugar cubes in spoons turn into

 

divots           we speak this potpourri

into forests held in wicker

 

centerpieces            their brims the lips

of the clearing           

 

lips that suggest forests being eaten           

 

the fragrance of each basketed gasp

a consolation

 

from the gentle obliterations

 

our own mouths birth in casting one

another into sedges where

 

we become figures disfigured           

dogs and orphans

 

who make their homes

among a pinecone's many dark pavilions


7.

 

we found a garden

in the forest as we followed

 

bends in roads and lips            the distance

linking cusp to cup           

 

we left no crumbs

 

but found this dark pariah            a garden

begotten            fronds fixated on

 

fricatives pillowy

 

as cotton            but cotton does not bud

in gardens

 

we bickered to the bread

 

or to the garden or the cotton or the cup

or to whatever

 

else had sung itself where it did not belong


________________________________________


James Henry Knippen lives in Martindale, Texas, where he serves as the poetry editor for Front Porch Journal. His poems have previously appeared in DIAGRAM and Softblow. Additional selections from Dinner Table (Conversations at the) are forthcoming in burntdistrict.