Josh Dugat

Setting the Leaf in
My Grandmother’s Table
by Josh Dugat

Another Holy Day – the table cannot hold

Creation as it is: the eight-month-old

enraptured with his reach; the toddler who paints

with gravy; cake pans grinning through the faint

crow’s feet that age has cut, now brimming with the cryst-

al skins of chicken-fried-steak; the eldest

great-grandson’s loosened memory (this plate, this place,

the man who consummated every grace,

“this food unto our bodies and our bodies to

thy use”); remembrance she leads us through –

Set the table as a bone is set. Separate

the ends to make a space. Be delicate.

The table cannot hold, nor can the prayer

or leaf, but who could pray for such repair,

or such relief.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 23, Issue 1.

Josh DugatBorn and raised in Texas, Josh Dugat now lives in Tuscaloosa, Alabama with his wife and son. He’ll never cook chicken fried steak like his mother, grandmother, or great-grandmother, but it won’t stop him from trying.

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