Funeral Day in Saint John


Weeping by a fake porthole in the 
Hilton’s breakfast restaurant 
I eat seconds of bacon, and thirds

My grandfather wouldn’t have minded 
my breaking kashrut 
He would have whispered 
“I won’t tell if you don’t tell 
about the cheeseburger yesterday,” 
and chuckled sweetly

My mother is at her mother's place 
not listening to the sound of the phone ring—
sealing saran-wrap around 
a sponge cake, our Friday night leftovers 
soggy, teetering in the pan

The ocean solution looks like all of us—
in bits, floating wisps of white pollution 
What’s wrong doesn’t drown us 
We are doing dead man’s float 
except for grandpa

My sister arrives with the breakfast vouchers 
I get whatever I want 
before I figure it won’t be out of pocket 
I would pay for anything today 
even though I’ve been on boiled beans and rice for weeks 
had no choices to make about money

Her and cousin Jer come back from the buffet 
with full plates 
laughing about something 
Jeremy gets on the phone 
calling our younger cousins to join us 
We all eat as much as we can