STANLEY PACION (Chicago, Illinois USA)
Harvest Festival, Skördefest, September 2013
Would you but bale the hay, darling,
And then put the pumpkin atop
So that I might end my search
And have signpost to a loving heart.
Or better yet! Why not erect a pumpaguben?
Tie upon its giant metal frame
All the pumpkins and gourds,
All the color you can find,
Then set its hands and arms askew,
And on its uppermost pole
Mount a great-big autumn squash as its head
With beets for eyes and a carrot for a nose,
And fix some purple harvest corn for its teeth.
Be sure to arrange straws of hay across the crown
So the guben has some hair.
Then surely I would have right direction,
Know where your table’s set. And having had
Ready advertisement to your dishes, baskets and trays
I would proceed straight ahead;
And once at that place I would have sample of your plenty stores:
The pies, the stews and casseroles,
The jars of pickled herring,
Your cured salmon and your delicately minced whitefish balls,
The many kinds of sausages, and patties
Made from every kind of meat, domestic and wild,
The gooseberry and cherry and the other bottled fruit,
The lingonberry jams and the sandwich-style jelly cookies,
The kaffebröds and your loaves of breads, doughs
Which range from seeded, creamy rye to dark pumpernickel.
And there before the display of your harvest and kitchen
I might have hope to savor the bounty of your beauty,
And to fill myself with the nourishment of your love,
Feasting upon this sustenance
For however many the days of my life remain.
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