How Things Work

The mother guides the zipper-foot
installing a closure
to allow the buttocks to slide in.
Scraps of fabric slick the floor.

The father squints his aim
under the sun’s hammer, sinking
the 10-pennies. Pavement glitters
silver with bent nails.

The daughter angles her knife
along a pink translucent flange,
tosses the shrimp’s head in the sink,
slits thinly to expose the vein.

The son squeezes what’s left
inside black plastic, hauls it
to the bin so the family
can start fresh again.

Taylor Graham

If you have any comments on this poem, Taylor Graham would be pleased to hear them.

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