Kitchen Fable

By Eleanor Ross Taylor 1920–2011
The fork lived with the knife
     and found it hard — for years
took nicks and scratches,
     not to mention cuts.
 
She who took tedium by the ears:
     nonforthcoming pickles,
defiant stretched-out lettuce,
     sauce-gooed particles.
 
He who came down whack.
His conversation, even, edged.
 
Lying beside him in the drawer
     she formed a crazy patina.
The seasons stacked — 
     melons, succeeded by cured pork.
 
He dulled; he was a dull knife,
while she was, after all, a fork.

NOTES: This poem is part of a special section of Poetry magazine's May issue

Eleanor Ross Taylor, "Kitchen Fable" from Captive Voices. Copyright © 2009 by Eleanor Ross Taylor.  Reprinted by permission of Louisiana State University Press.

Source: Poetry (May 2010).

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This poem originally appeared in the May 2010 issue of Poetry magazine

May 2010
 Eleanor Ross Taylor

Biography

Eleanor Ross Taylor was born in 1920 in Norwood, North Carolina, and graduated from Women’s College, now the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, in 1942.  While studying at Vanderbilt University, Caroline and Allen Tate introduced her to novelist Peter Taylor, whom she would marry in 1943. Her poetry has been described as elegiac, lyric and feminine; writer Erica Howsare explains, “The southernness of her background . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Men & Women, Home Life

POET’S REGION U.S., Southern

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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