Endowed in perpetuity by the Glenna Luschei Fund for Excellence

Drisheen

Matthew Gavin Frank
From Prairie Schooner, Vol. 84, No. 4 (Winter 2010)

Call it a sheep, call it a cow, serve it
with raisins and a little salt. Inflate

the casing with a forearm, yours or
your mother's, blend one serum

with another, commingle with
the animals. The stuff inside us

has a residue, something that sticks
to the filter-rib, the plane tickets

and palm trees, the champagne
in the bony flute.

Ask your mother who still,
one year later, is on the steroids,

still has that cough. Boil pudding.
Get angry. Slaughter collected

in an earth-bucket, a hair floating
on the top. You'll think it's horse,

but you'll be wrong. Here, we are not
permitted to ride what we eat.

Hold her hand, watch her
shiver beneath the blankets. Remember

the buttery white sauce and plenty
of pepper. This is common,

our tradition, our slow coming
to the table, hands clean, blood

by-blood.