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by robbie gamble

- Christmas Eve, 2020

Yesterday, we rolled the galvanized cabinet out

onto the gravel drive, praise

the brisket, praise the bound

breasts from Ted’s turkey pen

down the hill, hosanna to wisps

of char rising from billeted

applewood offerings slid into

the firebox, nothing so sweet

and tender and complicated

after eight hours over gentle

smoky heat. O taste and see

the goodness of this flesh,

sliced across the bias, to be

shared with neighbors—but

then who are our neighbors,

packed into virulent cities,

or flung over fields and borders,

playing out this tenuous vigil

for blesséd, incensed release?

And who then would volunteer

descent onto this Solstice-dark

orb just now, spotting a leap of curiosity if only to fall off the bone and dissolve upon my salivating palate?


Bio: Robbie Gamble (he/him) is the author of A Can of Pinto Beans (Lily Poetry Review Press, 2022). His poems have appeared in the Atlanta Review, Lunch Ticket, RHINO, Salamander, and The Sun. He divides his time between Boston and an apple orchard in Vermont.


Image by Bree Anne
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