The Fishwife's Chair

He loves the chair that groans,
loves how it carps like a fishwife.

At five thirty he settles onto its cracked leather pad,
sagging from family abundance;
every joint rickshaw shaky
still holds legs hickory strong.

One day, he thinks, gorilla glue to the rescue;
shore up this damn thing.

The chair, a relic of family opinion,
has cradled more than bottoms and legs.

It’s throned vituperative lumps
red faced and hissing at Murrow
reporting tanks in Warsaw,
at Cronkite questioning the TET,
at Mandela’s climb to president.

Wonders why blood in Haditha matters.

This chair is tired.
It creaks because it's full and worn.
Patina coats its bony arms, oiled mocha
with worry, hands bearing up under the news.

It knows what complains hangs around –
sturdy as a dirge. What complains
settles deeper like the bitter edge of sweet.

It creaks to remind him - even the sturdiest
welcome empty moments when thoughts
settle like dust; when silence rescues
frantic frays to fix the world.

And it creaks in hope that maybe tomorrow
he'll think to remember the gorilla glue.


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