Monday, February 27, 2012

Got Milk?





Sandwiched
at the checkout
by Mennonites,

I am conspicuous
in white linen,
bright MAC red.

One in a bonnet
that could double
as a dinner napkin,

tugs five, gallon
containers of milk
to the conveyer,

glances sideways
at my Chardonnay,
latest Vanity Fair.

I imagine after,
she chugs a drink
in a Fairlane truck,

carefully takes
out the bobby pins,
blots foam from her lip.



tk/February 2012



R.A.D. Stainforth goes grocery shopping...


Visit his amazing blog Black Dogs.



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69 comments:

  1. They don't seem to envy us our enjoyments.
    Finding their own.
    rel

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  2. When I go to Costco I see the cults. I am not sure if I see the men. I do see the women.

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  3. And do Rabbi's eat the occasional bacon sandwich?

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  4. Not all Mennonites wear bonnet's, I belong to the General Conference, the drinking dancing Mennonites, who were considered rebels back in Russia. No offense taken though, I can see my self in that check out holding a Cosmo mag, and wondering.
    Some of the Old Order Menno's in my area are the ones buying lingerie at the Thrift Shop. :)

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  5. Can she put on some deodorant in that Fairlane, too?

    I've been in that line... even been tempted to throw Vanity Fair on the conveyor ;)

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  6. A lot of Mennonites come into town from Plain City...named for the plain ways of the Amish...to grocery shop...the women always look so very sad...

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  7. To be caught at the paying counter surrounded by people of all makes and dresses is not uncommon. To each his own I gather!

    Hank

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  8. Cloaked in lightheartedness, but so steeped in depth of contrasts. We don't always think carefully enough about such things, do we.....

    BTW: Was that Fairlane a turquoise blue??

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  9. I went to a Mennonite founded college for a while. We had to sign a waiver stating that while we attended this school, we would not go dancing.

    You can surmise what was first on my to-do list come the weekends...

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  10. Rick, yes, turquoise blue! How did you know?

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  11. Marcheline, I can't see you at a Mennonite school...not no way...not no how...

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  12. Very vivid, and really kind of sad too. K.

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  13. I enjoyed the way the phraseology of your poem sandwiched the Mennonites into our time and space, although as I read the words, it is you being sandwiched at the checkout. Thanks for sharing this Tess. =D

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  14. I always tend to think these cult(ish)living people miss out on so much of life but then, they probably think the same of us too.
    Nice write Tess.

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  15. A far cry from any shopping expedition I've been on...

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  16. ..."blots foam from her lip." Oh, yes.

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  17. Lord, how I love canned milk. The forbidden pleasure.

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  18. Dear Tess: Mennonites Gone Wild? I remember going to the states to get "tugs five, gallon containers of milk". She's a wild one. Watch out for her~! They've got cows...and they "Got milk?"

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  19. We all have to let go sometimes..thanks for the humanity!!

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  20. first off the photo gives me a large chuckle. hmmm, why does this man need so many paper towels. and is dinner campbles soup and wine?

    i find folks, like nuns and mennonites and the amish quite haunting and effecting. to be sandwiched between two might be some kind of blessing. sad they may appear, yet they chose to remain with their tradition. perhaps it gives some kind of security and traditional comfort.

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  21. I am as you know an ascetic and would frown upon a woman drinking milk ...

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  22. observance...

    let's go cart watching sometime...it is the "checkout" counter after all

    Peace ☮

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  23. love people watching ...and when in the supermarket it amazes me how different people shop ...takes all sorts to make this world interesting..long live the differences ! thanks for sharing

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  24. Suki, the guy in the photo is Andy Warhol...I like that his cart is full of paper towels, champagne, and beer...and the Campbell's soup...well you know what that's about...

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  25. Kez, the textures of people and cultures are what make the world delicious...

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  26. What the hell? Andy Warhol went to the supermarket? Who knew? Lou Reed? Is everything a question?

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  27. from Andy to Mennonites....who woulda thunk?

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  28. OH, what a vivid picture you paint.

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  29. Yes, a vivid picture, of which I can totally relate.

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  30. .. and later sneaks the red MAC from under her cape ... carefully paints on a smile.

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  31. Milk is probably better for ya than Chardonnay ;)

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  32. loved how you end the poem, this happens almost every day.

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  33. This is clever, fresh and original. And on top of all that, wonderfully read! Thank muchly!

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  34. I like the mustache! I guess they don't all have cows....oops- that is Amish sorry.

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  35. Oh, Tess... I was quite the little Bible-banger back in the day, yessirree bob! Had an epiphany when I was around 21, but before then I was a strictly straight-and-narrow girl, with the odd occasional bout of dancing my only vice.

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  36. On her apron, no doubt! Love it - really paints a picture.

    We live in Mennonite country too. This rings very true.

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  37. You had me from the opening lines Tess; how I could I fail to read on? A bonnet doubling as a dinner napkin - wonderful idea!

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  38. Other people's shopping is so much more interesting than one's own;-)

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  39. Yeah, I'm always fascinated by what others have in their carts...

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  40. Beauty is through the eye of the cream of mushroom soup.....love this Tess!! I am the same way....i love to take a look at other peoples grocery items....you can learn a lot about a person by what they buy. :-)

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  41. So many different degrees of Mennonite, yet I know the type. Worked for a Mennonite once in Amish country. Love the poem.

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  42. I recall a piano playing blues man named the Rev. Billy something...lots of snow up the nose, and great on the ivories...sang a song called Mennonite Surf Party. We live in close relation to lots of Mennonites, Amish, etc., here in our neck of the woods, Tess. Always interesting to observe the cultural differences. Sadness is relative...what do others think looking at us? Love your poem...very much grounded in the place we call home.

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  43. Is that Andy Warhol?

    And I do love your poem -- I imagine AH would have as well.

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  44. well done Tess...thanks for sharing

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  45. A delightful piece of thoughful...

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  46. I love people watching. I guess it's only fair that they watch me too!

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  47. But don't all strangers in a checkout queue wonder about each other in the same way? I think they do...

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  48. Trell, absolutely...I would love to know what she was thinking about me...the checkout is people watching at its best...

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  49. I'm always fascinated by the completely random stuff some people buy ... I include myself ...

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  50. That was really good Tess. There's room in this country for all of us! That's one of the things I like so much about it.

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  51. Cool spin on the prompt...and cool prompt Tess, thanks!

    I watched a documentry about Andy and his superstars, tripy!

    Wander

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  52. ...reminds me of the times when my wife Kathy and I travel back to visit her family in Mt. Vernon Ohio, and the Amish, packed in their "yoder toter", come rolling in to town to market...

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  53. Only five gallons of milk? I have seven or eight on my list today.

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  54. T...that's a hellava lotta milk!

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  55. Good read, love the situation set-up.

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  56. The grocery store is the great equalizer...love where you took us with this (or me, anyhow, could go several ways). What makes poetry delicious. Thank you.

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  57. Haaa! Love it. When I lived in the Shenandoah Valley in VA, Tess, we were surrounded by Mennonites, and my friend Tom used to look at their little net caps on their heads and he'd whisper to me, "get them out of those sin-sifters and they'll do anything..."

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  58. Oh, those awkward check-out encounters....

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Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)