“Cherry” by Stephen Kingsnorth

Why do I keep the best till last
when eating cake;
quite unlike wine.
My mindful taste buds
find their pace, start marks
from first eye-captured plate,
declared by sharp seep under tongue,
gland leak swamping salivary, amylase-ready,
first attack.


But then with
fingers, silver fork, or even, patience,
Latin grace,
I have to pick the landing site,
where to dig archaeology.


A cherry bakewell,
red top last,
or jam glued to the underside,
roof icing goo-spread over top?


My favour is
to face the bland,
sandwich crusts or boring crumbs
of comfort, prelude true tidbits.


As strategy slowly evolves, brings
nearer mountain summit loom,
my nightmare,
banquet guest of Queen,
We finishing,
my dish removed.


* In British royal custom, known as ‘The Royal We’, the Monarch always refers to themselves formally as ‘We’ rather than ‘I’. When the Monarch has finished eating their dish, all guest plates are removed.


Stephen Kingsnorth (Cambridge M.A., English and Religious Studies), retired to Wales from ministry in the Methodist Church with Parkinson’s Disease, has had pieces published by on-line poetry sites, printed journals and anthologies. He maintains a PoetryKingsnorth blog.

Photo by Alan Stephenson on Unsplash

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