December 29, 2014

Rebecca Schumejda

A LOBSTER’S HOME

On Thanksgiving, everyone brings,
my uncle boils the lobsters
we will eat in lieu of turkey.
Claws instead of wings.
The women put out
crackers and picks,
troughs of melted butter
and empty bowls for shells.
Even though most of us moved
off the Island, everything and every-
one we love comes from water.
My brother worked on a lobster boat
with some other men in our family
when he was still in high school.
Now he is losing his house,
deciding whether to
make the bank take it from him
or simply give it back.
I pick every last crevice,
even suck the meat from the
antennas and eat the red eggs
hiding at the end of my
husband’s tail as he and my
daughter look on in disgust.
It’s alright, really, I try to
convince them in the same tone
my brother used when he told me
he stopped paying his mortgage.

from Rattle #44, Summer 2014

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Rebecca Schumejda: “When he was alive, my father constantly reminded me of how everything can be taken away from you, except your knowledge—and in this economy, that old adage has sustained me.” (website)