Ah the joy of family get-togethers. I wrote this in response to a prompt: write a “new arrival” poem. It is a compilation of a few friends’ family fun-times. If any of this sounds familiar, I hope it is because you are one of us in the corner.
Trapped in a one-sided conversation
with her new husband’s sister.
“You work?” the girl says. “That’s stupid.
I got welfare and food stamps,
It’s T.V. all day for me.”
And there goes Uncle Jake –
Watch him drag the back of his hand across Ella’s ass
as he squeezes past her
on his way outside to drink his fifth rum and Coke.
“Sorry, Sugar. It’s a little tight in here.”
Little Jeffrey stabs her hard in the back
with a plastic sword.
Her new father-in-law
screams at his third and youngest wife
when he learns she’s made macaroni salad
instead of potato.
Her hubbie won’t save her.
He’s hiding in the den,
watching the ball game
with the dogs.
But she’ll learn.
A few more holidays
and she’ll realize
that the safest place
is in the corner
with those of us who married into
those of us who ignored advice
to meet the whole family