The Delicious Taste of Crab Legs
I must say I come from a horrid taste
When I had olives
I had to get rid of that horrid taste by
Eating some of my mom's delicious crab legs
They were so delicious that I could probably
Celebrate, jump up and down, give my brother
A dozen kisses even though I don't like him
They were orange and white
Kind of long and kind of short
They were so delicious
They were so delicious that
I can say Delicious 1,000 times
Adore Bell, fifth-grader at Detroit's Marion Law Academy
First Menudofest (for John Rosalez, 1935-1990)
want to try
the ox says
its powers are
regenerate tired heads
and heavy hearts
el rey del menudo
with warm tortillas
from hands steadied
by strong heart
and warm pansa
mysteries he shares with the ox
from the pansa of the ox
we are warm
from the pansa of the man
we find love
Lolita Hernandez, from the chapbook collection, snakecrossing
Triple Tall Sugar-free Cinnamon Dolce Americano
Your typical drive-thru
next to two
vigorously Christian women
to my left.
Their fervor? Absolute music.
I no longer kneel
at The Christ Club,
toast them, now.
My white/green cup rises:
Call me Food Boy.
If you are a crook
you better watch out.
If you don't I'll
turn you into a slice
of ham. Then I'll turn
your blood into pop
and I'll drink you.
If you steal money
or jewelry you are going
to be chocolate cake
with icing. Then I'll turn
your bones into cookies.
Richard Winston, third-grader at Detroit's Golightly Educational Center
What We Do With the Fish After We Gut the Fish
We eat the fish. Our mother fries up the fish in a cast iron skillet that spits up buttery fish fried grease every time she drops a bread-crumb-battered fish fillet into the pan. We sit at the kitchen table in front of our empty plates and listen to the pop and pizz and sizzle of the frying-up fish. Just yesterday these fish were swimming in the muddy waters of our muddy river and now they are gutted and headless and chopped in half and about to be swallowed into our open mouths, our empty bellies. Our father is outside, in the shed, sharpening his knives. When all the fish have been fried up hard to a crisp- shucked golden-colored brown, our mother will tell us brothers to call in our father to come inside to eat our fish. Fish on, we will tell our father. Come and get them while they're good and hot. Our father comes when us brothers call. Us brothers stand back and watch as our father tracks mud into our mother's kitchen. Our mother tells our father look what you've done. Our father looks down at his muddy boots and says the word mud. Our mother throws up her hands and then she throws the frying pan of fried-up fish at our father. We watch our dirty river fish skid across the kitchen's floor. Our father tells our mother that he and us sons fished for and caught and cleaned out the guts out of those fish. Our mother tells our father that he knows what he can do with those fish. Then she tells us how she hates fish and fish smells, how she hates this dirty, fishy river, how much she hates this fishy, smelly town. Leave, our father says to this. Our mother says maybe she will. They both turn and walk away, our father back outside, our mother into hers and our father's bedroom. Us brothers, we are left with the fish, are left to clean up the mess. We drop down onto our hands and knees, onto the floor, and begin to eat.
Peter Markus, from the recently reissued Good, Brother
Student poems workshopped by Anita Schmaltz and Peter Markus, InsideOut literary arts program.
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