Spring 1980 • Vol. II No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1980 |

Ode

Grandma stuffed her fur coat into the icebox. God Himself couldn't convince her it wasn't a closet. "God take me away this minute!" was her favorite Friday night prayer. Nothing made sense, she said. Expect heartburn & bad teeth, not sense. Leave a meat fork in a dairy dish & she'd break the dish & bury the fork. "I spit on this house, on this earth & on God for putting me in this life that spits on me night & day," she cried, forgetting the barley in barley soup. It wasn't age. She believed she was put here to make one unforgivable mistake after another. Thou shalt be disappointed was God's first law. Her last words were: "Turn off the stove before the house blows up." Listen, I'm thirty-four already & nothing I do is done well enough. But what if disappointment is faith & not fate? What if we never wanted anything enough to hurt over? All I can say is spring came this year with such a wallop the trees are still shaking. Grandma, what do we want from the

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PHILIP SCHULTZ’s latest books are Living in the Past (Harcourt, 2004) and The Holy Worm of Praise (Harcourt, 2002). He founded and directs the Writers Studio in New York City and lives in East Hampton.

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Grandma stuffed her fur coat into the icebox. God Himself couldn't convince her it wasn't a closet. "God take me away this minute!" was her favorite Friday night prayer. Nothing […]

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