Thanks for the Italian chestnuts—with their
tough shells—the smooth chocolaty
skin of them—thanks for the boiling water--

itself a miracle and a mystery--
thanks for the seasoned sauce pan
and the old wooden spoon—and all

the neglected instruments in the drawer--
the garlic crusher—the bent paring knife--
the apple slicer that creates six

perfect wedges out of the crisp Haralson--
thanks for the humming radio—thanks
for the program on the radio

about the guy who was a cross-dresser--
but his wife forgave him—and he
ended up almost dying from leukemia--

(and you could tell his wife loved him
entirely—it was in her deliberate voice)--
thanks for the brined turkey--

the size of a big baby—thanks--
for the departed head of the turkey--
the present neck—the giblets

(whatever they are)—wrapped up as
small gifts inside the cavern of the ribs--
thanks—thanks—thanks--for the candles

lit on the table—the dried twigs--
the autumn leaves in the blue Chinese vase--
thanks—for the faces--our faces—in this low light.

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