Elisabeth Adwin Edwards

{I threw away the Le Creuset}

after Diane Seuss

I threw away the Le Creuset, tossed it into the recycling bin
where it landed with a giant, iron-y thud, twelve pounds of dutch oven,
bottom now dinged and enamel stained, ombré orange lid shedding chips
of paint into my last stews, bits of Flame I’d fished out fleck by fleck till
I said to you we have to give it up, seventeen years you said, weight
sinking in, the couple who gave it to us on our wedding day long
split, their son almost grown, our own daughter, too, who was like a roast tucked in
the oven of my crooked womb at the time, half-done, my dead mother
who’d shown me how to use a knife to dice an onion said love, this’ll
last a lifetime if you care for it, how badly I needed to care
for everyone so I started making soups, casseroles, cassoulets
like a mad kitchen witch and the Creuset was my cauldron, I tasted
for umami, salt, the sweet bitter of spring greens, tomatoes, the iron
cast a spell, held the heat in those days I fed you from my burning mouth.

{My violence astonishes me some days}

after Diane Seuss

My violence astonishes me some days, the way I regard the lesser
goldfinches in the lavender, each the size of a thumb, I want
to cram them into my mouth, want to crunch their tiny hollow
bones between my teeth. I’ve always longed to be delicate, a
delicacy. What is the mouthfeel of wingedness? When I bend
over my mother’s mechanical bed, I can feel her seed-sized need,
hear the soft rasp of her air hunger and I’m seized with an urge to press
my chest to hers with a force that stops breath. She’s so beautiful and sad
I could eat her! When I was a girl my father bragged about her long
fine limbs, how he was a gam man, how she was blessed in this way.
On outings they always walked up ahead of me. I knew he could love
only one woman, his arm clamped around her shoulder the way I once
saw a boy on the playground pick up an injured thrush, he held its wings
to keep it from flapping, kept on holding till it went all still in his hands.

ELISABETH ADWIN EDWARDS’s poems have appeared in The Tampa Review, Rust + Moth, TinderboxPedestal, Posit, and elsewhere; her prose has been published in HAD,CutBankOn The Seawall, and other journals. Her work has been nominated for Best of the Net, the Pushcart Prize, and Best New Poets. A native of Massachusetts, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband and teen daughter in an apartment filled with books.

Read more by Elisabeth Adwin Edwards

Poems in Posit
Poem in River Heron
Poem in Rust + Moth