Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
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SHJ Issue 14
Spring 2016


by Michael Estabrook

Bill gets all worked up over the news
terror threats, gun violence, corrupt politicians
so I tell him don’t watch it, take a jog instead
have a martini, collect coins or butterflies
nothing you can do about any of it anyway.

Aunt Alice earned a brown belt in Judo.
Uncle John raised orchids and canaries.
Aunt Jean collected videos of musicals.
Kerry taught himself the piano and violin.
But what does it mean now they’re all gone.

Finally the day ended with my darling wife scowling
at me because I told her I’m not doing any more
of this house-fixing-up happy-horseshit now
it’s 7 pm so there. Put that in your pipe and smoke it
I tell her, but I’m not sure she heard.


SHJ Issue 14
Spring 2016

Michael Estabrook

is a recently retired baby-boomer child-of-the-Sixties poet freed finally after working 40 years for “The Man” and sometimes “The Woman.” No more useless meetings under florescent lights in stuffy windowless rooms. Now he’s able to devote serious time to making better poems when he’s not, of course, trying to satisfy his wife’s legendary Honey-Do List.

“...we have been born here to witness and celebrate. We wonder at our purpose for living. Our purpose
is to perceive the fantastic. Why have a universe if there is no audience?” — Ray Bradbury