Pieces of furniture, like sculptures, art objects saved, catalogued by fond memories.
Was it a repurposed table
someone made out of a door?
Was it the time I asked my grandfather
why he made a fire on the table
and without blinking he grabbed
a bucket full of water to put it out?
My grandmother cut hot mǎmǎligǎ on it
with a white thread.
Was it Betty and Murray’s table
with the best conversations?
Was it the side table in church
where families bring covrigi
and turtǎ dulce for the soul of the dead?
Was it the table where my father
saved a handful of apricots
for when my mother arrived home?
Somewhere there is a table
in a cool room despite the heat outside.
Pieces of furniture
like sculptures, art objects
saved, catalogued by fond memories.
Someone cut down the tree
it was made from, someone carried
the boards with a horse cart.
Hands softened the corners,
left an imprint. Wise patterns
of the texture tell a story:
like Brâncuşi’s table of silence,
the ones we lost break bread together,
feast on the fruits of good deeds.
Lucia Cherciu is the author of six books of poetry, including Immigrant Prodigal Daughter (Kelsay Books, June 2023) and Train Ride to Bucharest (Sheep Meadow Press, 2017), which was the winner of the Eugene Paul Nassar Poetry Prize. Her work was nominated multiple times for a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Her poems appeared in Poetry, Antioch Review, and elsewhere. She served as the 2021-2022 Dutchess County Poet Laureate and teaches at SUNY / Dutchess. Her web page is http://luciacherciu.webs.com.