Sour Liver Vodka

Margaret O'Brien

Margaret O'Brien

Remember the day you put pierogi in the suitcase
in Poland; you flew
across the continent

Later, together we swam up Market Street drowned St Andrews red
in afternoon
you bought green-skinned leeks, long and thick like children's arms
white-spooned sour cream
butter from the barrel
Zoładkowa from the man just off the square
all sad blue eyes,
Irish, and homesick?

You sizzled them in a borrowed frying pan
we toasted gold wódka and golden dumplings
our smiles filling cold like water into paper cups
stomachs heavy, heavy hooks holding us fast
to that strange Scottish town.

Afterward, walking out to West Sands to see
the gravel-voiced seals, grey as the breakers
and the sheep on the hills so far away, enough to be
just flecks of lint on the rolled over land
the arched backs of tellurian beasts
that still slumber, slumber and sleep?

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