Sleeping Beauty Makes Dinner

by Sally Rosen Kindred

I woke — cold kiss, that snow! —
I married you. And now
afternoon, I'm in your kitchen
bending through the tender heat,
tending what?—your black stove.
Today you hunt:
tonight you'll bring home
venison. Someone here
will baste the meat on a spit. I'm
your Briar Rose, your Beauty:
I'll do it, boil greens soft
as flesh, spear them with a fork
grief-keen as a spindle,
pepper them with my
sweat's pearls. I stir.
Or did I ever

wake? Would a princess
be circling this pot,
her hand scarred from sleep's glass thorns
and feeling the push
of the dark ladle through the broth,
her hair rising to mist in its steam?
I love this heat. Is that right?
It's all too much like those years
of stained glass sleep, when dreams
finally named you: my hands
moving over the spoons
open and cold as your mouth
and the sound of your horse
beating back up the path,
the whinny's blue scrape
on the lips of the late, mistaken hour.

Sally Rosen Kindred is the author of No Eden (Mayapple Press, 2011). Her poems have appeared in Strange Horizons, Through the Gate, Linebreak, and The Moment of Change. Her chapbook of poems about Wendy Darling and Tinker Bell, Darling Hands, Darling Tongue, is forthcoming from Hyacinth Girl Press in spring 2013.

Her favorite fruit is the blueberry, because it's got that sudden, glassy taste of broken stars.

Back to Table of Contents