Four generations’ tradition
Interrupted last summer
Because of Corona
This year we’ve re-gathered
On that Nor Cal inland
Working family farm
To try to restore ourselves.
Each morning starts at
Dawn with milking
Setting laid eggs in baskets
Then sampling picked
Berries, stoned fruit
Tomatoes etc on saunter back
Before those of us on AM
KP duty convene in
Kitchen to whip up expected feast.
Sequester nostalgia already set in;
sentimental, irritating, obviously too wordy
waste of your own precious time…
despite consulting manual, website,
YouTube videos plus multiple calls to Miele
technical support line; double-vaxed
now so can have repair person come
inside kitchen; how I miss not having to bail
out our dishwasher each morning run.
Days trapped in infinity
of endless housekeeping, feather
dusters plus scorching kitchens,
then each night for the week
none of us Jewish women
sat all-male shiva.
When that minyan of men
finally emerged for their
plod around my block, another
one of them had his heart attack
g-d bless our sons.
number of kitchen-counter
serried ranks smelled of
unique stench human manure/
limestone were undressed.
After a [too as usually] exciting Shabbat
With all the geegaws and fixins’
Passed on by my grandkiddies
Who instead were playing
Toward crowd of guests
I popped each of them on their risers
In our daughter’s kitchen to fill
Up on various nuts plus berry
Goodies ‘til we three toddled
Upstairs to read some books
While they down last milkie ba-babas
Alongside pet rabbit George/Dotty
(Nobody can tell apart), closing
With fave Five Little Monkeys
Before now put boys to bed.
i. Los Angeles Veterans Cemetery
Sped by hundred times
—suddenly you realize
classmates died in Nam
lie there like rows of dominos
—theory of war proved untrue.
ii. Unhoused, Forgotten
West side of VA
hospital, Veterans Row
Tent City’s allowed,
CANNED HEAT KITSCH
ain’t your only form cooking
but kitchen gets hot.
Gerry is a Harvard-trained physician who’s built and staffed clinics for the marginalized, as well as a Stanford professor and healthcare CEO. Currently he is devoting energy/resources to deal with climate justice, and serves on Climate Action Now’s board. Gerry’s been married since 1969, with three kids plus six grandsons, and is looking forward to potential future granddaughters. He lives in the hills above Stanford and Silicon Valley. See more about Gerard at gerardsarnat.com/.
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