That you could drop it on the floor.
That you could hit it with a sledgehammer.
That you could back over it with a Mack truck.
That in this Henry J world where we rattled along
crying for a Tucker—here at last was the real thing.
That it came in a variety of colors including maroon.
That you could get it with S&H green stamps.
That once all 32 pieces were stacked up on the pantry
shelf you’d never have to buy dinnerware again.
That at last he could enjoy his Kix or shredded wheat
in peace—knowing every bowl on the kitchen table
That never again would Mom shout, “Butterfingers!”
nor grieve over china lying in ruins at our feet;
nor swear as she cut her toe on an unswept shard.
Pharaoh of our New Jersey duplex, Dad dreamed
of burial, near the Nile, with his favorite cup & saucer.
“Melmac,” he said, “would last ten thousand years.”
From Heavy Lifting (Alehouse Press, 2007).
Used here with the author’s permission.