Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
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SHJ Issue 18
Spring 2018

Sometimes Pie

by Carolyn Miller

So life lets you have a sandwich, and pie for your
late night dessert.
—Eleanor Lerman, “Starfish”
Sometimes life lets you have pie, and
sometimes not. Once, you might have searched
for that shack up in the mountains called
Pie in the Sky, but when you finally found it,
it was closed. Sometimes you might be
sitting at your desk, working on someone else’s
bad manuscript and wishing that instead
you were at Mission Pie at Twenty-fifth
and Mission, trying to decide between
the banana cream and the rhubarb and
asking yourself, Why do I have to decide?
One time, a friend might tell you about
her Pie Night, and you might wonder why
you’ve never been invited. And then you decide
that one day you’ll have your own Pie Night,
and you will serve cobbler (as a variation)
baked in the handmade porcelain pie dish
given to you by Nina, and rhubarb pie, the dough
rolled out with your mother’s old green-handled
rolling pin, and for that matter you will make
her lemon meringue, the crust thin
as an autumn leaf, the filling tart and sweet,
the beaten whites rising up in glory, pale
as moonlight in the valleys, golden on the peaks.

—in the spirit of poet and friend, Steve Kowit


SHJ Issue 18
Spring 2018

Carolyn Miller

grew up in the Missouri Ozarks, where she was baptized in the Roubidoux River at the age of eight. Today, she lives in a Romeo and Juliet flat on the Hyde Street cable-car line in San Francisco, where she writes, paints, and works as a freelance writer/editor. Her books of poetry include Route 66 and Its Sorrows (Terrapin Press, 2017), After Cocteau and Light, Moving, both from Sixteen Rivers Press, and four limited-edition letterpress chapbooks from Protean Press. Her poems have been featured on Poetry Daily, The Writer’s Almanac, and American Life in Poetry, and have appeared in The Gettysburg Review, The Southern Review, Prairie Schooner, and The Georgia Review, among other journals, as well as in several anthologies, including Garrison Keillor’s Good Poems: American Places. Her honors include the James Boatwright Award for Poetry from Shenandoah and the Rainmaker Award from Zone 3.

“...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