First Texas Thanksgiving
by Robert Wynne

I was welcomed to Texas
by Stove Top Stuffing

simmered with a healthy dose
of Jimmy Dean sausage.

That’s when I learned
certain flavors can offer solace

when you simply don’t know
the name of the white dog

sniffing her way up your leg
or how your wife’s whole family

turns whirlwinds of vowels
into coherent sentences.

Since then, I have conjured
this concoction myself

and celebrated being
part of this small clan that serves

sushi and mashed potatoes
at every gathering. It is

starches that bind us, keep us
comfortable enough

we don’t realize
how bitter the air.


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