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Short Fiction
Discriminating Evidence
by Mary Logue

Price: $9.00
70 pages
trade paper
ISBN: 0922811091
LCCN #: 90-039386

Giving Thanks for the Turkey

We watch mother stick
the thermometer in the turkey's
browned flesh and wonder: are we well?
are we getting better?

We once had a brother who threw
the black cat, Whiskers, up high
into the air to see the look of
alarm and limbs akimbo and we try
not imagine how his body
must have flown across the freeway
hit by an unseeing car at sixty,
his legs and arms doing their last strokes
through the air. No place is set for
him at the dinner table. Dad watches
the football game alone.

We once had a sister who made up words
and drank too much, the words rising
out of her, the liquor taking their place,
little left in her when a stranger came
to steal her final breath away.

On this day we are subdued and spit
the thanks out of our mouths,
a splintered bone, dangerous to us,
wanting to lodge in our throats. We say
aloud, the pumpkin pie is good, the wild
rice superb, and to ourselves, please,
let no one else to missing next year.

Let's start again. Let's give thanks for
ducks rising, lacy yarrow, window-paned ponds,
snow days, wood ticks, and glass jars full of agates.
Let's start at the other end of things,
where we see what has happened, where
the dog of understanding lies under
the table at our feet and waits for the turkey's neck.
We can begin by giving thanks for the turkey,
the bird of plenty, ugly and fierce in life,
comforting and delicious in death. We will
eat the light and dark meat of the turkey,
say, it's done perfectly, how could it be
any other way.

“Logue's artistry, and her authentic feelings and intelligence, illuminate and deepen the reader's own journey. A passionate, private, and elegant debut.”—DeborahKeenan

“Mary Logue writes with accuracy, imagination and passion; hers is a debut to be grateful for.”—William Matthews

“Mary Logue is a poet's poet. Her insight, clarity and simplicity of language,and unshakable calm set the standard for other poets to follow. A refreshing and intense book.”—Calyx

“These are the poems of a woman who has experienced first-hand how little is within our control. As such, they are meditations on fate-its violent and mysterious ways—and the moments of grace that emerge feel hard-won: authentic gifts passed on from poet to reader.”—Hungry Mind Review

“We share such redemptive epiphanies and agree with the poet when she says, "I know a slender secret: / truth has many sides." So does this book, this writer.”—Minnesota Women's Press

“The poems in this collection are well-crafted with language that is elegant, yet hits hard and is at once familiar and original. Personal and direct, a classy debut.”—The Corresponder

“This collection is remarkable in how the poems cohere and create a dramatic dialogue.”—NorthStone Review


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