526 Readings

Thank You So Much

At the food pantry you don’t say no.
You say, ‘Thank you, ma’am, thank you so much.’
And you put the offered food in your box, and you try to show
that even though you need the food, your mama
raised you right, that you’ve got manners.

Thank you, ma’am. Thank you so much.
For the frozen chicken, the peas and the
day old baked goods and bread. Thank you
for the cans of juice, the spaghetti and sauce.
Thank you so much.

The block of frozen chicken comes with a recipe. 
Simmer in water until the meat falls from the bones.
Add one can of diced tomatoes and serve with spaghetti.

USE TODAY said a bright orange sticker.
Use today.  So, we did.

We did simmer the chicken, until the meat fell off the bones.
The skin fell off, too. There were so many bones,
thin fingers of bone, long strings of ropy veins. Falling
off the bones.  More bones than anyone would think were
in one chicken.

The recipe said to add one can of diced tomatoes.
So, we did.  Serve with spaghetti.
So, we did. We boiled spaghetti and served it with
this - this mess - of meat, skin, bones and diced tomatoes.

The recipe didn’t say how to eat the meat.  We served it
with the spaghetti.  I left the room to cry for a minute.
Came back and told my children to eat the meat with their fingers.
To use their manners and eat the noodles with their fork.
Told my children not to eat the bones.
Just the meat.

Thank you so much.
Posted 02/24/12
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