with your embroidered tablecloth
stitched with intricate flowers
We and our cousins, still in our teens
and twenties mocking his serious tone as he
kept a straight face amid
matzoh companies in free haggadahs
Our stomachs rumbling, empty from starving
ourselves all day in wait.
I remember before we ate the meal – the ritual.
in the salt water. You and your sisters delighting
Then at last your homemade gefilte fish, your
homemade chicken soup, your chicken, your
brisket, your potato kugel and tzimmes–
Though the food will probably not be
homemade, and I do miss your chicken soup.
Your face aglow with the steam
as you scooped out the fat.
liquid until it was clear. While I hunted
for the good china, the good silver
voice reassuring, gentle
set your bird glasses, (now sitting
and thirty-seven for Dad
years there has been a space
who can envision