November 27, 2009

Poetry Friday--"Perhaps the World Ends Here"

Yesterday, many of us spent time at the kitchen table paring, cutting, slicing, buttering, carving, doing all those things that need be done to prepare a Thanksgiving meal. Some of us ate in the dining room, but others sat down to dinner at the good old kitchen table. Joy Harjo celebrates the kitchen table in "Perhaps the World Ends Here":

The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.

The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.

We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.

It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.
To read the rest, click here.

This week's Poetry Friday Round-Up is being held at Becky's Book Reviews.


  1. This poet and poem are new to me. Thank you for the introduction. :)

  2. We miss so much by overlooking the obvious in the everyday. Thanks for bringing this poem and poet to our attention, Diane.

  3. Lots of great memories, come to think of it, around the kitchen table back home and around the one here in my kitchen. That's the best thing about poetry -- it helps us see that the ordinary is really quite extraordinary!

  4. Lovely poem, Diane. What about the kids' table? Did anyone else have one at their feasts besides my family? It was always such an interesting 'graduation' of sorts -- to finally make it to the 'grown up's' table!

  5. There were two kids' tables this year at our gathering! There is no graduating though--space is at a premium!

  6. Terrific! I have always liked Joy Harjo, but I haven't read this one before. Thanks for sharing.