How to Hear God While Making Thanksgiving Dinner | Charlene Pierce
Your granddaughter wants your attention. Your youngest grandson has learned to climb and loves the sound of pans banging against their lid; the other toddler has learned that the power of his scream is stronger than words and decided to never use them. You have the bird in your hands, raw and waiting to be stuffed. You’re covered in salmonella, and who knows what other deadly bacteria you can’t pronounce, you need to wash. The towel is missing. To hear your granddaughter’s soft voice, you must kneel to her, put your ear close to her lips. Your oldest grandsons are running through the house, laughing. They found something to make a sword. You hid the wooden knife, the plastic Ninja Turtle dagger, the pink sparkly baton, the cat toy with a ball hanging from a wand, and still they found something to make a sword. Secretly, you’re proud of their ingenuity, and you want to play, run through the house yelling “en guard,” but your granddaughter wants your attention. You fear they will soon be at the age when Nana isn’t cool, but they have friends who are. The turkey is raw and waiting to be stuffed. The pies are done. The oven isn’t beeping yet, or maybe it is, but you can’t hear it, and you smell the browning crust taking over the pumpkin’s spices. You used to make them by hand, back when you had time or when you thought you had time. Your priorities were different then, and you only had two daughters. Mothers now, sitting ear to ear, talking as sisters do, only to each other. You could call to them, tell them to take the pies from the oven, the cranberries will be simmering over soon, and the turkey is raw and waiting to be stuffed. But you remember how your shoulders relaxed when you went to Grandma’s for Thanksgiving, and someone else was cooking, and someone else was tending to the children, and someone was taking care of you, and you want that for your daughters. You want everything for your daughters, and this you can give them even though the turkey is raw and waiting to be stuffed, and your granddaughter wants your attention. Dry your hands on your pant legs and kneel down to listen. Put your ear near her lips.
About the Author:
Charlene Pierce founded the Nebraska Poetry Society, a non-profit organization, to make poetry accessible to all. It is an essential mission to her as a person with a disability who overcame poverty. Her poetry and prose have appeared in several literary journals and Nebraska anthologies, including “Misbehaving Nebraskans.” She published “The Poet’s Journal: A Beginner’s Workbook for Writing Poetry.” By day, she is a freelance writer appearing on websites and blogs across the country and in local magazines.