There are thousands of forks and only two spoons

in my sister’s kitchen drawer. She carries forks with her

wherever she goes, gripping them with her whole hand,

tightly, like a toddler just learning to feed herself.

She quit another job this month, tossing

the doomed business from her fork’s tines

into the refuse bin.

It’s the third one since September.

She’ll pierce another soon, bringing it, dripping,

up to her teeth where she’ll chew and chew,

consuming the juice which blooms from it

for a little while. “The taste fades so fast,” she fumes.

Every man she has ever loved has left her

except our father. He, too, carries forks;

her youth wombed by those he’s wounded.

They make a pair, those two.

I tried to show them how to use a spoon once.

I dusted off the tool and scooped love into

its smooth bowl, but it reflected it back to them

upside-down; they turned the spoon over

and everything fell out.

A middle-aged and graying poet sits in a newly-cut hay field.  Her chin rests in her left hand, and she wears a black t-shirt with an American bulldog on it.  Her furrowed brow is the language of her people, and she squints into the camera under wispy clouds and unrealistically-blue skies. There is a sparse line of trees and an aging barn behind her

Christina Linsin is a poet and teacher in western Virginia. Her poetry examines connections with the natural world, complexities of mental illness, and difficulties with creating meaningful connections amid life’s obstacles. Her work has been recently published in The Milk House, Stone Circle Review, and Still: The Journal; and she has work forthcoming in Whale Road Review